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Media in the middle

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Thursday, 2 August 2012 18:34 by Ad astra
Older readers will recall the days when news was purveyed only via newspapers and the radio. Although that was a long while ago, and memories of those days are dimmed by the efflux of time, my recollection of that era was one where reporters ferreted out the facts from wherever they were hidden, verified them by cross-checking against other sources, and promulgated them in unalloyed form untainted by the reporter’s opinion, unadulterated by ‘he said, she said’ reporting, and free of ‘press release’ propaganda. Reporters ‘wore out boot leather’ or ‘played the phones’ to bring us the real news. Of course during wartime some of the ‘news’ was subject to censorship and state propaganda designed to keep morale high, but we accepted that as appropriate.

How different it is now. Apart from the multiple media outlets that exist, the style of reporting has changed so that the consumer of news now has to refine the slivers of gold from the heavy overburden of dross. And in fact it’s worse than that. If it were only a matter of refinement, many readers are perspicacious enough to find the gold, but we now have another layer of overburden – propaganda, a deliberate intent to persuade, to deceive, to cajole into believing whatever the writer, or more sinisterly the editor or proprietor, wants us to believe. News outlets have become a powerful means of persuasion, of bending consumers to the will and the beliefs of the authors. There is no more flagrant example of this than the Murdoch media, and should Gina Rinehart get control of Fairfax, we should expect the same.

How many times have we heard political commentators say: “Labor never seems to be able to get its message across”. Or “Every time Labor has some good news to announce, it is drowned out by some mishap or disaster”. Or “Whenever Labor has a success or has achieved a legislative goal, leadership speculation overwhelms it.” Or “They just can’t seem to throw off speculation about a change of leader, or Kevin Rudd’s return.” Or “Labor can never get any ‘oxygen’ or clear air”. And who is to blame for this? Labor of course – it is hopeless at communication they say. It amazes me that those who say that with a straight face either cannot see, or refuse to acknowledge, that it is the media that consistently ensures that Labor’s attempts at communication are thwarted. It is the media that can always find a negative story, a downside, a contrarian view to counter anything positive the Government achieves, any ‘good news’ stories it has to tell. How many times have you heard Barrie Cassidy, Leigh Sales, Chris Uhlmann, Tony Jones, Emma Alberici, Fran Kelly, or Karen Middleton utter those very words? Cannot they see that the Murdoch media particularly, and much of Fairfax media too, deliberately runs interference to counter Labor’s good news so that the adverse news gains prominence over the good. These journalists can easily see the phenomenon, but are seemingly blind to its origin.

This piece asserts that one of Labor’s intractable problems is that ‘the media is in the middle’, in between the actual news, good and bad, and the public, that the media filters the good news about Labor out, and replaces it with the bad, albeit too often constructed out of little or nothing at all. It is part of the media’s strategy to run a continual campaign of obstruction so that Labor gets almost no ‘clear air’, no ‘oxygen’ to disseminate its good news. There are hundreds of examples of this.

Before someone comes here insisting that once again I am unfairly ‘blaming the media’ for the contemporary state of news dissemination, for Labor’s current position in the opinion polls, let me quote from David McKnight’s book Rupert Murdoch An Investigation of Political Power (Allen&Unwin, 2012). He describes how in the US Murdoch has used Fox News “…to pioneer a new form of political campaign - one that enabled the GOP to bypass sceptical reporters and wage an around-the-clock, partisan assault on public opinion. The network, at its core, is a giant soundstage created to mimic the look and feel of a news organization, cleverly camouflaging political propaganda as independent journalism”.

McKnight goes onto say: “In Australia, the desire by Murdoch’s news media to shape the agenda of Australian politics shows no sign of diminishing. Its two most powerful weapons, the Daily Telegraph and the Herald Sun, run regular campaigns against Labor and its policies, but are particularly venomous towards the Greens. The flagship Australian, as Robert Manne said in his prescient Quarterly Essay, remains an ideologically driven newspaper ‘unusually self-referential and boastful, with an extreme sensitivity when it is criticized. Its most distinguishing stance is its ‘loathing and contempt for anyone who thought radical action on climate change was needed’.”

McKnight concludes his book: “Given his oft-repeated rejection of retirement, Rupert Murdoch is likely to remain a powerful figure capable of influencing world politics for a considerable time to come.” So unless the Leveson Inquiry brings him undone, we have much more Murdoch interference to come.

If anyone is still sceptical about Rupert Murdoch’s preoccupation with commercial power and the exercise of political and ideological influence over governments on three continents, please read McKnight’s book. Page after page documents how he has become involved in high-level politics for many years.

He was a great supporter of Margaret Thatcher, Ronald Regan, George Bush and John Howard, a strong advocate for the Iraq War, a promoter of the now-debunked ‘weapons of mass destruction’ story, and the supposed connection between Osama Bin Laden and Saddam Hussein, one that never existed, one for which there was never any cogent evidence.

He was an opponent of closer relationships between the UK and Europe, and editorialized strongly to push his views on this. Through his US Fox News he has supported the Republican Party and its extreme right wing extension, the Tea Party, running a virtual propaganda machine that is venomously anti-Obama, strongly pro-Republican, and aggressively anti-global warming.

We know he has ‘courted’ national leaders in several countries, and indeed they have ‘courted’ him for his support politically. This has come out in all its ugliness in the Leveson Inquiry. Tony Blair flew halfway round the world to a News Corporation meeting at Hayman Island to curry favour. Anyone who doubts that Rupert Murdoch has an anti-Gillard, anti-Labor, anti-Green agenda should look at the overwhelming evidence that this is so. His editorials have called for ‘the destruction of the Greens at the ballot box’. His media outlets are pro-Coalition and pro-Abbott, who is never put under scrutiny by his media, never challenged, never questioned about his policies or costings, never corrected when he utters lie after lie about the carbon tax, the minerals tax, asylum policy, or for that matter any Labor policy. Abbott gets a free ride. And he knows on which side his bread is buttered: “I hope he liked me”, said Abbott after their one and only meeting in the US. I’m sure he hopes just that, and is now convinced that even if Murdoch doesn’t like him much, he will support him, because he wants a change of regime, a change all his outlets promote day after day.

Now I know any newspaper proprietor has the right to pursue his or her commercial interests, and to hold any ideological or political position, even to use whatever means that are available to pursue them. But is it right, is it fair, is it moral for just one man to be able to exercise such unbridled power on three continents, such that he can change governments or keep them in office through the power of his media?

Should one man have this disproportionate power to persuade the electorate to his own views? And should he have the unfettered capacity to do this by disseminating untruths, distortions, and downright lies? Should one man have the power to poison the minds of the voters against the nation’s PM and her active and productive Government, the power to mount a disingenuous campaign, Fox News style: “a new form of political campaign - an around-the-clock, partisan assault on public opinion”, in order to dislodge an elected Government?

Folks, this is serious – this is exactly what News Limited is doing; it will not stop until it succeeds, no matter how long that takes.

Let’s look at a few examples of how this is being done.

Murdoch regards The Australian as his treasured flagship even although it is said to not turn a profit. Its modest weekday circulation of around 100,000, with weekend patronage a little larger, does not lessen its value to him. It is aimed to influence opinion leaders in commerce, industry, agriculture, banking and politics. And it does.

Murdoch journalists know the ‘party line’ and readily toe it. Maybe they subscribe to it, but even if they don’t, they know that their continuing employment depends on pleasing Uncle Rupert, or at least not upsetting him. Although one reads the occasional ‘no one tells me what to write’ from News Limited journalists, everyone knows what the corporate line is, and dutifully complies. In his Quarterly Essay Bad News – Murdoch’s Australian and the Shaping of the Nation Robert Manne documents how editor Chris Mitchell makes it clear in his weekly meetings with his columnists how he wants stories to ‘come out’. And so they do.

Paul Kelly is a doyen of Australian political comment, has written tomes about it, and is a Walkley Award winner. One might imagine that he would be fiercely independent and not subject to editorial strictures. Yet his writings are compliant with the Murdoch line. In his review of Kelly’s book The March of the Patriots in Crikey Guy Rundle points to: “…the great flaw that runs through his work - an almost visceral dislike of some amorphous group, variously known as “progressives”, “the Left”. People from this group are rarely, if ever, quoted – they’re an amorphous chorus of noises…” This visceral dislike contaminates his weekly columns and TV appearances. He argues against the carbon tax, castigates the Government over its asylum policy, the minerals tax, and its style of government. And because of his aura of authority, his word is gospel to many. It is a pity that someone of his journalistic stature is such a Coalition sycophant.

There is little point in spending much time on Dennis Shanahan, who is unashamedly pro-Coalition, who can extract any drop of good news for the Coalition from Newspoll results, and any amount of bad news for PM Gillard and her Government, not that this takes much effort at present. He joined with Matthew Franklin in the News Limited campaign against the BER and HIP, which ran unabated for months, even after three Orgill Reports showed over 97% satisfaction with the former.

Neither is there any point in discussing the partisan contributions of Christopher Pearson, Tom Dusevic, Judith Sloan or the editorial writers at The Australian. Just glance through the last issue of The Weekend Australian to see what I mean. Find if you can anything that is complimentary to PM Gillard or her Government.

In his desire to establish himself as a columnist and TV commentator, Peter van Onselen prefers to follow the party line, often to his detriment. He sarcastically derided Julia Gillard over her opposition to a levy to fund the NDIS, a move that would have given Tony Abbott another GBNT slogan. Even Abbott discarded the idea of a levy, leaving PvO exposed as naive.

Don’t be deceived by his innocent baby-faced appearance. This man is a venomous enemy of the PM and her Government. This is what Uthers Say had to say about him in a piece: Enter the Australian all spin zone – a News Corporation duplication “Australians are seeing Fox News channelled in Australia by News Corporation’s Australian operations and particularly in not too subtle form on The Contrarians hosted by News Ltd’s Peter van Onselen.

“The practices of the Fox News Channel revolve around keeping the audience afraid and enraged. Those who stand between the very wealthy and greater wealth must be labelled, vilified, and dismissed. The tactics of its “news folk” and commentators include stacked panels, name-calling, talking over or shouting down any opposition, having a ready supply of villains that the audience will have Pavlovian responses to, and of course feeding the perceptions they create that suit the narratives that serve their corporate masters so well.”
The Bolt Report uses similar techniques.

Do read the whole piece to gauge the extent of van Onselen’s malevolence, and how the tactics used in the US Fox News, which is nothing more than a propaganda machine for the Republican Party and its extreme right wing manifestation, the Tea Party, are replicated here. Fox uses the disingenuous slogan ‘fair and balanced’ and its dishonest catch cry is: ‘We report, you decide’.

In searching for even one non-partisan writer for this newspaper one is left with just George Megalogenis, who writes well on matters economic, and at least backs his assertions with facts. But even the much-respected Mega at times seems to be avoiding conflict with the party line when he writes his columns.

In my view The Australian is patently partisan in its opposition to the Gillard Government and its support for the Coalition. Almost everything it publishes is designed to replace the Government with a Coalition one.

The same could be said for the rest of the News Limited stable. It is fruitless looking for a non-partisan writer there. Bolt, Akerman, Lewis and McCrann are conservatives with a vitriolic hatred of Labor, and the others largely follow their lead.

Let’s look at the Fairfax stable, where one could once reasonably expect to find better-balanced journalists. Ross Gittins and Peter Martin are standouts in that they present the facts as they are. They write mostly on matters economic, and do it well. At the Australian Financial Review there are some sound writers, chief among them Laura Tingle, who seems to be able to see things others can’t, and express them in clear prose.

But the Fairfax journalists that are most read are a big disappointment. The grande dame of political journalism, Michelle Grattan, who once could be relied upon to write balanced articles, has got her knife so far into Julia Gillard that she can scarcely say anything good about her at all, even when the PM has a substantial success to her credit. There is always a down side that gets the emphasis. Any acknowledgement is given begrudgingly. Why she is like this she alone knows, but it shows, and reflects poorly on her.

Phil Coorey seems a reasonable sort of fellow, especially on Insiders, but even his articles are tainted with the disparaging remarks about the Government. Peter Hartcher, whose well-written book, The Sweet Spot, I reviewed a little while ago, too gets on his high horse to vent criticism against the Government.

To read their columns a visitor could be left with the impression that Australia had an incompetent, leaderless Federal Government that had no vision, no narrative, and no accomplishments, that does nothing but fight over leadership, and that is headed for certain electoral wipeout at the next election, from which recovery would take a decade, or more.

They, along with many other commentators, are so certain of this electoral tsunami that they speak as if it were a foregone conclusion. Discouragingly, their dire predictions seem to be based on contemporary opinion polls, to which they wrongly attribute predictive capability, even this far from the next scheduled election. How these columnists have been conned into assigning such power to the polls is beyond me, and I suspect to some of the better pollsters too.

And it’s not just regular journalists that indulge in the perpetual ‘Gillard is doomed’ rhetoric. Crikey’s Bernard Keane is regular knocker, and recently the usually supportive Mungo MacCallum has joined the doomsters, basing his assessment on a discussion he had with half a dozen mates at a pub. Even Labor politicians are gloomy. We are used to Richo rabbitting on about the PM’s political demise as a matter of when, not if, but when Steve Bracks joins him and talks about Labour being wiped out around the nation, Labor supporters despair. Mind you, he retreated from this line when he recently launched his book, A Premier’s State.

Indeed it’s hard to find many who support the Government. NAB chief executive Cameron Clyne was one in an article by Ben Butler in the SMH Let’s stop the negativism, says Clyne Read it for a psychological boost!

So there it is – a media in the middle – interposed between the political reality of Federal politics and the public. Most of it is malignant; intent on spreading widely its cancerous message about PM Gillard and her Government, absorbed with metastasizing to every part of the electorate. Truth is irrelevant – bringing PM Gillard and her Government down is all that counts. The Murdoch media now reflects the strategies employed by Fox News in the US – an around-the-clock, partisan assault on public opinion – and the Fairfax media, and to some extent the ABC, is following suit. It is subversive and dangerous.

Can you imagine a football match where one team is playing well and scoring freely, while the other is floundering? Imagine now a clique of TV and radio commentators whose focus is on every real or trumped-up misdemeanour of the winning team, savaging their players and their coaches for ‘unfair’ play, rough tactics, poor strategy, incompetent ball handling, timid tackling, hopeless defence, pathetic attack, and lack of leadership.

Imagine the commentators overlooking the dirty tactics, the behind the play assaults, the lack of any visible game plan, the foul leadership, and the low scoring of the other side, glossing over these misdemeanours as inconsequential. Imagine as the game progresses and the score mounts, the commentators predicting, even at half time, a massive loss for the winning side based upon Sportsbet odds.

Imagine the umpires punishing every small or imagined infringement of the leading side with a severe penalty, while overlooking the gross violations of the other.

Imagine the supporters of the losing team hurling abuse, cans and bottles at the players, threatening to jump the fence and assault them. Imagine them endlessly chanting lurid slogans until they became deafening. Imagine this going on from the very beginning, and continuing even as the superior side piles on goal after winning goal, to the very end.

Imagine even some of the winning side’s supporters turning on them, criticizing their tactics, even the colour and design of their gear.

Imagine all that and you will have an image of what is going on with the media in this country. The media is in the middle, determined to shield the public from the truth, the real score, the real promise of greater things to come; determined to distract the electorate, to misrepresent the progress the Government is making, to promote the losers and paint them as in an impossible-to-lose position, but never prepared to expose their hollowness, their policy paucity, their costing dishonesty, their sinister agenda for our nation and its people.

Labor’s most pressing problem is the ‘media in the middle’.

What do you think?

Comments (394) -

August 2. 2012 07:02 PM


Well done, Ad Astra, even better than your best!   This needs to be said again and again!


August 2. 2012 07:12 PM


As usual, Ad astra, you have hit the nail on the head. Here in Qld, the Courier Mail is a bloody disgrace! And I cancelled my subscription with the Australian once Peter van Onselen changed from being a pretty balanced writer into a Coalition shrew. Pathetic, as he started out (mostly) inpartial. That the Courier Mail is basically the ONLY paper in town is holding all the plebs to ransom. Added to that, all our local & regional newspapers, such as Quest Newspapers Albert & Logan news here in my area, are also all controlled by Murdoch's media empire.
Honestly, I'm sick of all the lies! I haven't read the article your link provided regarding Peter van O, but I shall do so shortly & get back to you.
Thanks again for another accurate & informative article!


August 2. 2012 07:17 PM

Tom of Melbourne

Bill Kelty knows nothing-

  'I've got to be frank: it's too easy to blame the media, too easier [sic] to blame the playthings of politics. And there's no purpose blaming the opposition for doing what, after all, you would expect them to do, and that's to beat you.

''In a sense, I think we make politics just simply too hard. The truth will normally do.”

Read more: www.theage.com.au/.../...labor-20120518-1yw5j.html

Ad Astra is a far more astute analyst than any ALP/union luminary.

Tom of Melbourne

August 2. 2012 07:20 PM

42 long

  I'm glad to read such an article, and see it "out there". For more that 25 years I have believed that the most malevolent influence on democracy is the Murdock press influence and Power. No organisation should have this power to use. Those who deny it is happening are those in collusion with it who are happy to take the benefits.  As we see in the UK the benefits come with a consequence. Plenty of Journo's know this is happening. When are we going to get the facts from some of them or are they too cowed and scared of losing their jobs, or,do they also love the intoxicating taste of having power to influence outcomes.?

42 long

August 2. 2012 07:25 PM


Ahh!..good..I didn't want to be the first to comment AGAIN!...people will start to think I hang around this site too much!
Yes, AA..great article...Lots to talk about. One example we all are aware of with the MSM. blocking news is the Wixxyleaks and The Independant Aussie stories on Thompson/Slipper shenanagens.
I think it was last night I was gobsmacked to hear Leigh Sales excitingly announce that "...you remember how WE broke the story on the corruption in the HSU. saga...".....WHAT!! The MSM. were the LAST to come upon the scene....the blogsites had moved from breaking to making the pace on the story.
But yes, it is the media, always the media and only the media that shapes and breaks the personalities in the politics in the mainstream news.
Murdoch and now "Mikimoto Rhino" are doing their damnest to break this govt'...We can't do much about "the beast" yet, but Rupert ought to be declared personae non gratae and denied any and all access to Australia by any medium. After all, he is now a foreign national working against the interests of the nation....."Throw the bum out!"


August 2. 2012 07:42 PM


As Ad Astra says, the blatant bias of Rupert Murdoch’s News Ltd in Australia favoring the Coalition and the Opposition Leader, Tony Abbott, has done great damage in opposing the Government’s minerals tax and carbon pricing scheme along with promoting the chicanery of scepticism about climate change.  Yet it has not defeated the all important legislation bringing in these all important reforms.  Other major change has been achieved too in the areas of health and communications, particularly the NBN.  All that in the context of a hung parliament and the most tenuous hold on government has been achieved by the vision, tenacity and negotiating skills of our Prime Minister, supported by some very able Ministers and two very principled and strong minded Independent MPs.

Let's get behind them and ensure their decisive re-election in a year's time. Perhaps then the government will have the strength of numbers to address this blatant abuse of power by Rupert Murdoch.  Current Australian media ownership laws, as much the responsibility of Labor power brokers as Coalition in the past, cry out for reform.  Meanwhile  

Remember! “True Liberty Is When Free-born Men Speak Free!”

John Milton’s Areopagitica,
Crying freedom for the press
Back in 17th century England,
Resisted monarchy’s excess.

His tract was a mighty weapon
In democracy’s progress.
We are the beneficiaries
Of his most eloquent address.

But we ‘free-born’ were complicit,
As we watched and acquiesced
While that freedom was abused
With a brazen shamelessness.

We encouraged one man’s ambition
To buy up, control, possess
As property our thoughts in print
And we applauded his success.

We shared profits with this behemoth
Who now destroys our happiness
And publishes news of our world,
Writ as he commands it be expressed.

This threat to our democracy
Tells us it’s time to re-possess
What he uses as a licence
To break all rules and decency transgress.

Our precious freedom so perverted
Has caused society's regress.
Let’s use our laws while we still can,
Redeem ourselves, and truly free the press.


August 2. 2012 07:47 PM


Ad Astra

Well said, sadly.  Oh and you forgot the real traitors in the media, the ABC.  Most Australians trust the ABC.  I used to.  Not anymore, they are just as culpable, even more so as they are available everywhere in Australia, and they are supposed to be impartial.  I used to dislike people calling for the demise of the ABC, but I would now find myself in the front row calling very loudly, if not for their demise at least for a giant cleaning out and new, impartial staff being put in their place.


August 2. 2012 08:43 PM

Ad astra

You are all quick off the mark tonight.

Thank you Patriciawa for your very complimentary remark, and your elegant and apt pome: True Liberty Is When Free-born Men Speak Free!

Thank you for you kind comment.   I think you will be mortified when you read the piece on Uthers Say about PvO.  His strategy is right out of the Fox News playbook.

42 long
The Murdock power is frightening.  Almost every page of McKnight’s book documents this. The latest book Dial M for Murdoch by UK Labor MP Tom Watson and Martin Hickman is next on my list.  Here is the review in The Guardian www.guardian.co.uk/.../dial-murdoch-tom-watson-hickman-review

The review concludes: "In the end, this story is about corruption by power," he notes, before adding, vividly of the Murdochs: "From the criminal underworld to the headquarters of London's police force, from the decks of yachts in the Mediterranean to farmhouses in the Cotswolds and the deep-carpeted rooms of Downing Street, they had spun an invisible web of connections and corruption." The law of the playground states that the bully survives only if he is indulged. That surely is the greater crime, and that is laid at the politicians' door.”

Thank you for the compliment.  The Levinson Inquiry has a while to run.
By the time the next election comes along, who knows what might have happened to Murdoch and his empire.  Maybe his wings will have been clipped and his power in this country limited.

Thank you for your kind comment.  You are right.  The ABC is culpable; it is too often an echo of News Limited.  Why is this so?  Maybe it needs a new Board and MD.

Wasn’t it good of ToM to pay me such a nice compliment!

Ad astra

August 2. 2012 09:08 PM

Truth Seeker

Hi Aa, another clear and concise article laying out the shortcomings of the media in this country.
Great work.
I have posted a number of times on the need for a Canadian style "Truth in media" legislation, which I believe would be in the best interest of our great (although somewhat diminished) democracy.

I wrote the poem "The Boil" a few days ago, and as previously stated, was waiting for this new article before posting it.

Hopefully a bit of light relief, amidst the political thrust and parry of The Political Sword.

The Australian public looked upwards in awe
From the base of a hill that was not there before
It appeared just like magic…. And it grew overnight
And by the next morning…. was a hell of a sight
And some people said this was surely a sign
That the country was sick, and we’re in a decline
But the government said wait.. this just isn’t right
The economy is good and the future is bright
But the people got frightened by the sight of the mound
And despite all the evidence said the country’s not sound

But the government continued, as the figures were good
Ignoring doomsayers as they knew that they should
But frustration increased in the ranks of “The NO”
And the hill stole their focus and continued to grow
Big red and angry with a festering head
“It looks like a pimple”, one observant soul said
Then a little boy smiled, as he spoke to his Mum
“It’s just like that boil, that I had on me bum”
And a woman with shock written over her face
Said “The damned thing’s so big, you could see it from space”

So the question arose as to what should be done
With a bloody great boil that could blot out the sun
Could they lance it or squeeze it or just build a fence
Round a festering pustule that was so immense
But after heated discussion machinery was brought
So the squeezing commenced and the excision sought
And they pushed and they squeezed until up went a shout
And bugger me dead, all the media popped out.
Pushing harder and harder, spurred on by success
Coalition backbenchers were expelled with the mess.

Then the core broke away in a fountain of puss
And in the midst of the gore was an LNP bus
Covered with slogans and filled up with slime
Then the door slowly opened and out stepped Chris Pyne
And the children collectively said to their mummies
“It’s a big mincing poodle, with a mouthful of dummies”
Then Hockey slipped… landing, calculator in lap
But the batteries were spent and his figures were crap
Mirabella and Bishop stepped out hand in hand
They were covered in slime….. but their posture was grand

Abetz and his senators came out, single file
Followed closely by Abbott spewing venom and bile
His budgies were glowing and his hirsute chest puffed
But the people all saw that his party was stuffed
With his slogans revealed for the rubbish they were
And his efforts exposing him as the billionaires Cur
With their policy vacuum being more than enough
To expose them as naught but a large pile of slough (sluff)
So the people moved on with their confidence high
As the Abbott’s  ambitions went completely awry  

And the country recovered, growing stronger each day
While the LNP circus slowly faded away
And the moral for all is the poison… you’ll foil
If you use enough pressure to excise the boil
And don’t be misled into sad apathy
But seek out the truth, as it will set you free
Ask questions, demand answers and ignore all the spin
And then those that deserve it will hopefully win
And be careful when riding the LNP bus
As you may well end up…. Sitting… covered in… puss.


Truth Seeker

August 2. 2012 09:24 PM

Truth Seeker

Patriciawa, I wasn't sure if the poem was yours, until I read Aa's comment.
Nice one!

Truth Seeker

August 2. 2012 09:29 PM


Thanks for another excellent commentary. Unfortunately this is the only website that shows up the deceit and propaganda of Labor's opponents. I have caught out Van Onselen and Shanahan on perpetuating myths. Tony Windsor blew a hole in van Onselen when he tried to lie in an Agenda interview. VO got back in his box. In the USA Obama at least has the New York Times and the MSNBC supporting him. That is why Murdoch is desperate to take over the NYT. He has already destroyed the balance of the Wall Street Journal. Here in Australia Labor does not have a supportive newspaper or news channel.  Unfortunately that is why this country will see its worst nightmare PM-Tony Abbott


August 2. 2012 09:30 PM

Ad astra

Truth Seeker
Thank you for your kind remarks and for your superb verse.   What a great belly laugh it gave me as I reveled in your clever medical analogy.

There is nothing as effective and satisfying than lancing a ripe boil and watching its purulent contents burst forth.  And it’s therapeutic too for the bearer of the boil. Of course, the contents of the boil need to be consigned to the bin for soiled detritus and cast into the fiery furnace.

Ad astra

August 2. 2012 09:36 PM

Ad astra

Thank you for your generous remarks and for reminding us of PvO’s encounter with Tony Windsor.  It is a foolish man who tries to trip him up, but PvO doesn’t yet realize how wet behind the ears he is.

Murdoch may find his days of expansion of his empire are at an end.  News Limited may not be as potent come late 2013.

It’s been a long day, so I’m off to watch TV.

Ad astra

August 2. 2012 09:56 PM

Wake Up

Well said AA, couldn't agree more. In fact I would go as far as saying it is Murdoch, not the coalition that Labor needs to beat if it wants to see another term in government.

I most definitely don't want to see government regulation of the media and clearly self regulation has been a complete joke but something needs to be done to stop this rot and the question really is 'what'.

When one organisation holds nearly all the cards it is nigh impossible to have a meaningful debate on media regulation without the usual howls of gagging the press, threatening free speech, censorship, filtering etc, however a simple law against publishing lies or misinformation as news would be hard to oppose and even harder to argue against by the opposition or Murdoch.

It worked in Canada so well that Fox News wasn't able to get a look in there, and that in itself has to be a glowing endorsement.

Wake Up

August 2. 2012 10:14 PM

Truth Seeker

Thanks Ad for your kind words and appreciation of my poem, I am glad that It produced a laugh, and that you enjoyed the analogy.
It is great fun writing such verse, and employing subtle metaphors to emphasise a point (or two).
TPS is a great site, and I am happy to add my little bit via comments and poetry.


Truth Seeker

August 2. 2012 10:17 PM

Ad astra reply

Wake Up
Thank you for your pertinent comment. You are right,  Murdoch is the most powerful enemy.

If only we had the Canadian rule banning lying in the electronic media, what an improvement that would bring about. PvO would have to revise his strategy.

Ad astra reply

August 2. 2012 10:25 PM

42 long

I agree with everything you say Wake Up. The ABC in australia until recently had a unique status for representing a "balance". Which it can no longer claim. Murdoch hates the BBC claiming that  it is the enemy of free speech. As IF this bastard ever cared about free speech. Free speech is when he has the right to state what we should accept and any contrary view is opposed., by his regime. If a "state" like USSR has a paper called PRAVDA one could assume it is a slave of the state. When a monopoly on opinion, ( not fact ) like the NEWS LTD runs things we are supposed to believe that it is OK. Well It is NOT, and we should stop listening to this propaganda and realise how we are being manipulated.    

42 long

August 2. 2012 10:37 PM


Ad astra, great post as always. I think when you typed the following words you summed up the wizened foreigner's poisonous world view and his attachment to dishonesty, mendacity and corruption:

He was a great supporter of Margaret Thatcher, Ronald Regan, George Bush and John Howard, a strong advocate for the Iraq War, a promoter of the now-debunked ‘weapons of mass destruction’ story, and the supposed connection between Osama Bin Laden and Saddam Hussein, one that never existed, one for which there was never any cogent evidence.

His malevolent presence is everywhere in the msm.

With hindsight, we only have ourselves to blame for abandoning the media ownership rules set down by wiser heads, thus allowing this dreadful old man's foul tentacles to penetrate every aspect of the media

Hopefully when the Levenson Report is handed down, the tentacles will be prised loose in the UK and some action will be taken here.

No matter what, I think that legislation similar to Canada's wrt news reporting is essential, with harsh penalties for violations. It should also include shock jocks and opinion writers,; opinion is not exempt from truth.


August 3. 2012 12:43 AM


Thanks, Truth Seeker, that's an update of a pome I wrote a while back when the hacking scandal first broke out in the UK.  I like your political 'pomes' too. Let's see more of them.  From your command of form and language I suspect you might be a poet from some time back, rather like Talk Turkey who seems to have been essentially a poet first and a Labor champion later.  For me the need to encapsulate some thoughts about politics in a few lines has driven me to use verse as my vehicle at times.  I've started reading poetry proper only recently.

You are quite right.  Tony Abbott and his team are a boil on our body politic and we need to see him squeezed off the face of Oz.  As you wrote earlier

To hand the keys of this great nation
To the Abbott’s vacuous team
To rape and pillage our economy

Would be to

.....realise a nightmare… from the dream.


August 3. 2012 01:42 AM


Murdoch always says he doesn't  tell his editors what to publish, He doesn't have to, they just   know. How often does Murdoch bring  someone from outside the News empire  to edit his newspapers, They are usuually people with a long career in News and  have figured out early in the piece what attitudes they have to have to advance. Likewise their reporters.  In your assesment of the various senior writers at the Australian I think you missed Greg Sheridan He was an unashamed apologist for the Suhartos at the time they were lining their pockets and  people were being murdered in East Timor by the army and Rupert was trying to advance his interests in Indonesia. Mind you Sheridan had some mates, not least  some senior ALP figures! At the risk of being branded pickey I reluctantly point out it is the Leveson inquiry. And what compelling viewing that has provided


August 3. 2012 04:19 AM

Water Damage Experts in Philadelphia

Most Australians trust the ABC.

Water Damage Experts in Philadelphia

August 3. 2012 04:27 AM


Ad astra

Your writing awes me, not so much the writing itself as the breadth and depth and insight of the reading to which your writings bear witness. But your writing itself is so logical, so clear and ordered, I think you are nonpareil in everything you say. And you have never written better than this, as I'm sure you know!

It is sad indeed that every line is all too true. Oddly, though my wording is a lot less conciliatory than yours, I find it all too easy to write similarly condemnatory material about the many things I really hate, and I really do mean hate, as in hatred of that wrinkled nasty old ex-Australian evil wizard Murdoch. There's just so much to write about, the only problem being that often even the most virulent terms are just completely inadequate, as in, who doesn't have fantasies of physically snotting that poisonous poodle Pyne, kicking him in the ribs and gaoling him for complicity in attempted sedition?

Well before I reached the end of this new thread, I had some of the words of TS Eliot's poem The Hollow Men exercising the gerbils, and then just a few lines from the end you yourself referred to the hollowness of the Abborttians themselves.

So I looked the poem up, as you do so easily these day, and at the cost of a fair (or unfair?) bit of column space I'll paste it on the end. I know I could link it instead but it's nice somehow to grace the Sword with it, and to honour Ad astra's own writing with some of the best there ever has been. (I still prefer Ad's!)  

But I found first of all something unexpected, I'll let the Wikipedia notes do the talking. Funny though I don't think I ever saw any episodes, might now try to get it on DVD from my PUBLIC LIBRARY, it sounds worthwhile.  Others may have seen it and I'd be glad to hear their opinions thereof.

The Hollowmen TV Programme
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Genre:Situation comedy-Drama
Created by Santo Cilauro Tom Gleisner Rob Sitch
Directed by Rob Sitch
No. of episodes.12

Production Working Dog Productions

Broadcast Original channel ABC1

First shown in Australia Original run July 2008

The Hollowmen is an Australian television comedy series set in the offices of the Central Policy Unit, a fictional political advisory unit personally set up by the Prime Minister to help him get re-elected. Their brief is long term vision; to stop worrying about tomorrow's headlines, and focus on next week's.

The Hollowmen was first broadcast on Wednesday, 9 July 2008, on ABC1. Each series comprises six half-hour episodes.[1] On the eve of the first episode's national premiere, the series was approved by the ABC for a second series. The second series was screened right after the first, beginning on 13 September 2008.[2] Lachy Hulme will reappear in the third season.[3]

The comedy-drama satire is produced by Working Dog Productions, which was also responsible for Frontline, The Panel and Thank God You're Here. The music used during the opening credits is an edited instrumental version of the 1987 song "North by North" by New Zealand band The Bats. A special one-off presentation of The Hollowmen was created by Working Dog and played at Parliament House in Canberra on 11 March 2009, in support of the ABC's funding bid for 2009-12.

[Isn't that interesting? - I don't know how I missed it.]  

Now here's the poem: I have bolded the parts that seem to me particularly poignant.

The Hollow Men
by T S Eliot

Mistah Kurtz-he dead
             A penny for the Old Guy


    We are the hollow men
     We are the stuffed men
     Leaning together
     Headpiece filled with straw. Alas!
     Our dried voices, when
     We whisper together
     Are quiet and meaningless
     As wind in dry grass
     Or rats' feet over broken glass
     In our dry cellar
    Shape without form, shade without colour,
     Paralysed force, gesture without motion;
    Those who have crossed
     With direct eyes, to death's other Kingdom
     Remember us-if at all-not as lost
     Violent souls, but only
     As the hollow men
     The stuffed men.


    Eyes I dare not meet in dreams
     In death's dream kingdom
     These do not appear:
     There, the eyes are
     Sunlight on a broken column
     There, is a tree swinging
     And voices are
     In the wind's singing
     More distant and more solemn
     Than a fading star.
    Let me be no nearer
     In death's dream kingdom
     Let me also wear
     Such deliberate disguises
     Rat's coat, crowskin, crossed staves
     In a field
     Behaving as the wind behaves
     No nearer-
    Not that final meeting
     In the twilight kingdom


    This is the dead land
     This is cactus land
     Here the stone images
     Are raised, here they receive
     The supplication of a dead man's hand
     Under the twinkle of a fading star.

    Is it like this
     In death's other kingdom
     Waking alone
     At the hour when we are
     Trembling with tenderness
     Lips that would kiss
     Form prayers to broken stone.


    The eyes are not here
     There are no eyes here
     In this valley of dying stars
     In this hollow valley
     This broken jaw of our lost kingdoms
    In this last of meeting places
     We grope together
     And avoid speech
     Gathered on this beach of the tumid river
    Sightless, unless
     The eyes reappear
     As the perpetual star
     Multifoliate rose
     Of death's twilight kingdom
     The hope only
     Of empty men.


    Here we go round the prickly pear
     Prickly pear prickly pear
     Here we go round the prickly pear
     At five o'clock in the morning.
    Between the idea
     And the reality
     Between the motion
     And the act
     Falls the Shadow
                                    For Thine is the Kingdom
    Between the conception
     And the creation
     Between the emotion
     And the response
     Falls the Shadow
                                    Life is very long
    Between the desire
     And the spasm
     Between the potency
     And the existence
     Between the essence
     And the descent
     Falls the Shadow
                                  For Thine is the Kingdom
    For Thine is
     Life is
     For Thine is the
    This is the way the world ends
     This is the way the world ends
     This is the way the world ends
     Not with a bang but a whimper.


I am not a hollow man!

Ad astra is not a hollow man!

Comrades of the Left are not hollow!

Let the poem instead begin

THEY are the hollow men!
THEY are the stuffed men
Leaning together
Headpiece filled with straw.

And put the whole poem in the third person, where the Third person is the Fourth Estate!

THEY are the Media in the Middle.

And WE will, because we must, knock the stuffing out of their straw-filled heads.

Swordsfolks please retweet or otherwise proselytize mentions of Ad's new thread to you followers, do it every time in fact. He talks such plain sense, it helps to bring people back together after the deliberate fragmenting perpetrated by the Abborttians and those bloody Media in the Middle.

Don't quite know how to finish this so I'll just say



August 3. 2012 04:43 AM


Truth Seeker WOW!

TPS bids fair to be what The Bulletin was a hundred years ago!

Patricia, and thee,
and me, makes three . . .

And Yes, TPS is a great site, led from the front by our host's wonderful threads, and its spread far and wide every day by our resident but peregrinacious Tweety Bird Lyn. The better it gets the better it gets.


August 3. 2012 04:47 AM


Oops 'and its spread' = 'and it's spread'



August 3. 2012 07:02 AM



Typecast, Mr Denmore, The Failed Estate
Honestly, if you're a journalist and you can't do any of those things, I would argue you really have no business being in the profession in the first place. And I'm 53 years old. Starting a blog is hardly rocket science. Digital video? Hit record on your iPhone, plug it into your USB port, go to YouTube, upload. How hard can it be? Twitter? Please! Twitter is MADE for journalists, particularly headline writers.

#80 Parody of journalism Part 1- Spin and counter spin, with and without a News Corporation, Uthers Say
Firstly after two years of unrelenting campaigning by the News Ltd press and the news limited (limited by the sheer dominance of the News Ltd press in the Australian media scene) to keep Kevin Rudd in the leadership picture in efforts to delegitimise the Prime Minister of Australia, two out of three being sold on the news limited idea may not be a very successful campaign.

The Book of Mvrdoch, Archie, Archie Archives
With every Blogger and every Twitterer and every FaceBooker adding their voice.Blessed be the Blog Post and the Tweet and the FaceBook Update and the Wikileak.All saving Democracy and the world which became noisier yet finally amenable to reason.Blessed be the Fifth Estate and the power which devolved to the common man

Listen To The Music,Sal Piracha Only The Depth Varies
Mr Hockey was critical of Wayne Swan's continued offensive against the Axis of Greed, and decided (probably with the assistance of staff) that Mr Swan was drawing attention to himself as "Acting PM" to set himself up as an alternative to the unpopular Julia Gillard. I hate to be the one to break it to Mr Hockey, but here goes: Wayne Swan is the Acting Prime Minister. He doesn't need to draw attention to himself. He gets our attention because right now, he is our elected leader.

Gillard dodges the states' hospital pass, Mungo MacCallum, ABC
In the meantime, Gillard's stubbornness has, for once, paid off; she has got her trials, and the states - well, most of them - are on board. Even van Onselen has had to admit, grudgingly (in paragraph nine of another lecture), that her original "poor decision" has been vindicated. Coming from The Australian, that's about the best she could hope for

Swan Is On The Money, Ben Eltham, New Matilda
We’re taxing the rich less. Tax rates on the wealthy have fallen significantly in Australia. The top tax bracket was 69 per cent in 1970. Today it is 45 per cent. This means that the wealthiest in our society were paying more than one and half times more tax at the statutory rate a generation ago. Of course, its worse than that, because the very wealthy have vastly more tax perks, write-offs and accounting tricks with which to legally minimise their tax, such as negative gearing, self-managed superannuation, family trusts, and all the rest.

FWA review released: blow to biz lobby, Bernard Keane, Crikey
The business campaign for further industrial relations deregulation has suffered a major blow with the release of the review of the Fair Work Act by Bill Shorten today.

Our ABC: has it lost the meaning of respect or is it just following the political discourse? Miglo, Café Whispers
Has the ABC lost the meaning of respect or is it just following the political discourse? A discourse, it seems, being set by the Republicans in America and the Liberals in Australia where respect is ignored even if earned, yet handed out to the undeserving few

Will the Chinese Government eventually dominate the NSW electricity transmission network-,  Clarence Girl, North Coast Voices
The NSW Liberal government is devising a plan to attract greater foreign investment in the state's assets that will see more than $40 billion worth of infrastructure assets made available to Chinese state-owned companies, according to The Australian. On a tour of China, NSW Liberal Premier Barry O'Farrell said that Chinese state-owned companies would be able to bid on asset sales that will be outlined in an infrastructure blueprint due in September.

Bill Shorten cheated of an IR fight he could win, Rob Burgess, The Power Index
given that many of those enterprise bargaining agreements were struck last year when headline CPI was 3%, it can't in itself be used as a sign of a wages blow-out. Actually, Bill Shorten would prefer it was interpreted that way. Then he'd have a fight on his hands -- a fight he could win out in the electorate, and one that might actually bolster Labor's dire opinion polling.

Sell off the NBN? Abbott won’t confirm or deny, Renai LeMay, Delimeter
selling off the completed portions of the NBN would be horribly messy and wouldn’t really make much sense. The current NBN network is a real patchwork affair — bits of residential fibre here and there, wireless in patches, some substantial backhaul links, and satellite stations under construction. It doesn’t seem to make much sense to sell off those bits and pieces shortly after they were built — that, in my opinion, would mediate against a long-term Coalition FTTN strategy

YES WE’RE TALKING TO YOU, KONRAD: Patronising journalist ass gets behind wheel of taxi to discover what working is like, Vex News
This morning The Age has published an article so pat, so stupid its author will wander Media House being congratulated. It will probably win a Walkley. For one of their number has been sent on assignment to work as – wait for it – a taxi driver.

Why Abbott could lose the ‘unloseable’ election, Daniel Palmer, Climate Spectator
Then there is the potential for gaffes, with just one bad interview considered crucial in cruelling Hewson’s chances. Abbott hasn’t been immune from them in the past, so there’s nothing to say he will be immune in an election campaign

Australia’s best economic fundamentals since 1964, Stephen Koukoulas, Market Economics
One massively inspiring fact is that in 1964, Australia’s per capita GDP (US$ terms) was $2,250. In 2012, the IMF estimate it will be $69,000, an increase of more than 2,600%. We are a very rich country.

Job cuts and wage cuts, John Quiggin
Although he is happily ditching promises made to public sector workers, Newman cites vague language about the ‘cost of living’ to rule out any re-examination of tax poloicy, even though most of QUeenland’s low tax effort reflects concessions to business rather than households.

Carbon pricing impact low but big ,Donna Kelly, The Fifth Estate
Mr Skelton said a change of the Federal Government, with opposition leader Tony Abbott still declaring he will drop the tax, would be interesting.“There are lots of incentives and tax relief in the system which would make it quite challenging and in discussions I have had with colleagues, it’s not thought it would be repealed in its entirety

Fair Work Act review: weighing up the evidence, the spin and the wedge , Rae Cooper, The Conversation
But keep your eyes on Tony Abbott. He is a man who is deeply wedged on IR policy. He walks the line between having promised not to enact WorkChoices-style changes (remember the “Dead, buried and cremated” line?) and criticising every move the government makes. All without any discernible policy between these two points.

Today’s front Pages
Australia Newspaper Front Pages for 3 August 2012


August 3. 2012 07:02 AM

Truth Seeker

Patriciawa, Thank you for your kind word, And yes, you are right that poetry has been a part of my life for a long time as I was a singer songwriter in a previous life (prior to the onset of illness).
I have always been a student of politics, and despite times of disgruntlement, I believe that the ALP is the only party that shows real social conscience.
I have only been commenting on blogs for a short while, and have different names depending on the tone site. My respect for Ad's writing was why I chose "Truth Seeker",  as a reflection of his concise, straightforward, insightful, respectful and honest approach.

TT, Ditto.  
I do enjoy your honesty and passion, and am happy and honoured to be included.


Truth Seeker

August 3. 2012 07:36 AM


Truth Seeker, Patriciawa and Talk Turkey

Three great pieces to add to Ad Astra's latest and best topic.  There are so many good and clever people in Australia.  Thank you all for putting your best foot forward for Labor.


August 3. 2012 08:09 AM


Ad astra:  As usual a good piece on the rotten media we have in this country.  Murdock has poisoned the 4th estate totally even to the extent that our National Broadcaster dances to his tune. It is the corruption of our ABC that I am most angry about.

Truth Seeker:  Wonderful piece of verse you have given us.  I find it quite delightful that on TPS we are graced with three poets.

TT:  Hope you are coping ok and not suffering too much.  


August 3. 2012 08:22 AM


Truth seeker - wonderful work.

Lyn - even the descriptions of your links are informative, thank you.

And on the topic, psycologists will tell you there are a number of distinct stages to perceived danger (which I'm sure NewsCorp is feeling at the moment), from memory the second one is fight - and a media organisation will fight by publishing articles that are designed to change people's point of view.  At this point keeping the pressure up - media enquiries (UK), changing media laws (AUS) and loss of influence due to a decline in sales (Globally) will only add to the response.

In the end, I suspect NewsCorp will implode in a similar way to Conrad Black's empire - the difference is that Murdoch the elder will never do jailtime.



August 3. 2012 08:35 AM

Ad astra

LYN'S DAILY LINKS updated:www.thepoliticalsword.com/.../...-DAILY-LINKS.aspx

Ad astra

August 3. 2012 08:51 AM


Excellent article on an increasingly propagandising partisan Australian mainstream media.  One can only hope that their mainstream rapidly becomes a backwater.


August 3. 2012 08:56 AM



Your logic, breadth of understanding, research skills, patient writing style and your energy means that you are without peer.

The great testament to this in recent times is the vast array of new names that have appeared under comments here, especially in the last 3 months or so. And many choose to remain.

Great work.

There are a very few others, Mr Denmore for example, who are right up there  too, but IMHO, you shade them when both quantity and quality are considered.

And Lieutenant Lyn's magnificent efforts every day must not go unmentioned as a cause of so many posters and undoubtedly many more lurkers flowing onto this site.


August 3. 2012 09:12 AM

Tom of Melbourne

As a matter of interest, is the interest of the media in Gillard’s affair with Bruce Wilson, and her conflict of interest (client/lover) or her involvement (in the alleged misappropriation by Wilson) legitimate?  

Tom of Melbourne

August 3. 2012 09:17 AM



I forgot to mention that I was up until the end of last year a daily commenter (ie pro JG arguer) on the Drum.

I haven't been there even to read since then except on one occasion a few weeks back to use my registered name lest I lost it because of non-use.

Even on that visit, I merely made a quick faux comment to use my name, and read nothing ..... disinterest!

But at 3.30 am I was up today to watch the Lympics, and had a browse on the Drum with my ipad.

I was looking for comments from erstwhile "colleagues" who with me carried the fight to the enemy. Of about the 30 who I knew to be pro government I could find only 2 familiar names. I saw many of the familiar enemy commenters still writing there.

There were of course many pro government writers, but only those 2 that I recognised.

I am still pondering an explanation but I suspect it has got something to do with the frustration of dealing with the same 3 or 4  neoliberal writers who have articles there every week, sometimes 2 or 3 from the same person. I refer to Reith, Sloan, and one or two IPA reps whose hackneyed and unrefreshing rants the ABC is ready to publish day after day.

I am not referring to balance or bias at the Drum .... a quick look into the archives there shows a wide range of writers from all perspectives. But there is that few of which Reith the liar is a standout who have articles there day after bloody day. ( I know this from reading tweets and from visiting other sites who make mention of it)

Unlike TPS, the Drum had / has IMHO gone very stale and repetitive. After 8 months I don't miss it, even though it was formerly a place of excitement for me and the site where I cut my blogger's teeth.


August 3. 2012 09:45 AM

Ad astra

Hi Lyn
Thank you again for a great collection of links, which I will read after responding to the overnight comments.  To whet my appetite though, I couldn’t resist reading Mr Denmore.   I was taken with his conclusion, which is relevant to this piece: ”…good journalism is still about good news sense, intense curiosity, an ability to tell a story, a respect for the truth, a crusading mentality and a capacity for sometimes telling people what they don't want to hear. That hasn't changed. And it shouldn't change.”  (My bolding).  And so say all of us.

I’ll be back in a while to respond to the comments that came in after I retired last night.

Ad astra

August 3. 2012 10:51 AM


Good Morning Ad & Everybody

Firstly Ad Astra, A big Pat, Pat on the back to you.   Thankyou for another article for our enjoyment

             awarded  “ Supercalifragilistic”  reading.

Thankyou Talk Turkey,  2353 and Pysclaw you are all fabulous posters, consider youselves leg-roped.

From Melissa Clarke’s interview on ABC 24 this morning re- Tony Abbott’s discussion paper on Foreign Farmland investment.  You would think from Melissa’s report Tony Abbott is the Prime Minister and has released a new policy.  More information about Tony (B-----) Abbott  than any of the Government Policies.

Did you see in Today’s links the” Uthers Say” article is a sequel to the first one yesterday on Peter Van Onselen and Fox News.

Mark Riley has been mixing with   fake sources again, no NSW  polling   au.news.yahoo.com/.../

#auspol want the #truth? Julia Gillard Expose by #Anonymous - $1,000,000,000 embezzlement of AWU funds http://wp.me/pxCdv-cd #osyd

Andrew Catsaras‏   Laura Tingle
Change the subject but not the tune www.afr.com/.../change_the_subject_but_not_the_tune_ktDViqL4m39nqScDep0lAK

National Times‏@NationalTimesAU
The Australian public needs to have confidence that foreign investment is in the national interest, says Abbott www.nationaltimes.com.au/.../...0120803-23jh8.html

Channel 7: Senator faces more shoplifting charges http://goo.gl/fb/wPSuO #auspol

Ross Bowler‏@BowlerBarrister
Campbell "Not Fully Briefed" Newman: Some statistics resources1.news.com.au/.../...job-cuts-graphic.jpg @POTRM

ABC News‏@abcnews
Coalition wants rethink on foreign investment http://bit.ly/M6VFpY

Private Law Tutor‏@Priv8LawTutor
Newman to close court doors in QLD. What will this do for justice in the State? m.couriermail.com.au/.../story-e6freon6-1226441795124

Peter Pyke‏@PeterPyke
"Premier public enemy no. 1" in Mackay. All over Qld, actually. That was quick, but he is in a league of his own. www.dailymercury.com.au/.../

Norm‏    Judith Sloan  (Not recommended  bad reading bad article) just proof of nonsense
australian Fair Work Act review an object lesson in spin | The Australian http://bit.ly/OIW7M9 #auspol

David Marler‏@Qldaah
@mrumens "Fears Newman axe will fall on home help" http://ow.ly/cHul1 #qldpol #auspol #qld #nswpol #vicpol #taspol #sapol

skye laris‏@harperly
Premier Newman says there's not enough money for an #NDIS - but he found $110m for something else really important. www.racingqueensland.com.au/.../Newman-Government-delivers-Gold-Coast-racing-upgrade

National Times‏@NationalTimesAU
One fight the Coalition will shy away from www.nationaltimes.com.au/.../...0120802-23ih1.html via @NationalTimesAU

National Times   Phillip Coorey
Business lobby angry at 'inadequate' Fair Work review www.nationaltimes.com.au/.../...0120802-23ih0.html via @NationalTimesAU

National Times‏@NationalTimesAU
Hands off farm: Coalition www.nationaltimes.com.au/.../...0120802-23ikh.html via @NationalTimesAU

Sharon Carpenter‏@msscarpenter
If you still think the NBN is a waste, consider the opinions from the Aussies who are actually using it. m.theage.com.au/.../...st-lane-20120801-23fqe.html #li #auspol

Get the impression that Abbott making policy without consultation or negotiation Hands off farm: Coalition www.theage.com.au/.../...ition-20120802-23ikh.html via @theage



August 3. 2012 10:53 AM


Another fine article coincides with my own opinion of the current media.
As in some of my past comments our or should that be "their abc" is not worth capitals and I have often refered to a Dennis Wheatley book "Such Power is Dangerous" which is about media domination but my recent search indicates it meant the movie industry not print media. Old age catching up with me.

The abc needs a JC clearing out the temple action and a few Labor Ministers standing up and condemming any journo's actions that just repeats the MSM lies by simply interrupting them for a change and then telling them to their faces that that is bullshit and then forcing the facts on to the airwaves. Well I can dream so someone please tell me I am not living in a Matrix reality and Neo/Julia is the one.


August 3. 2012 11:25 AM

Ad astra

Good morning and thank you so much for your thoughtful comments overnight, which I’ll now attempt to answer.

Those words summarize many pages of David McKnight’s book Rupert Murdoch An Investigation of Political Power.  Although I had read here and there about the Murdoch influence, until I read this book I had no idea how pervasive it had been for decades and on three continents.  Every page raises the eyebrows.  The fact that Murdoch has not sued McKnight or the publisher suggests that it an accurate account.  

Murdoch is not interested in just the commercial side of his business, he is an ideologue with an intense interest in politics on a global scale, and seeks to influence national leaders to his point of view.  While some of the influence is exercised covertly, much is done overtly through his media.  He has been labelled the world’s most powerful man, which may be an exaggeration, but he could easily wear the more modest tag: ‘the world’s most powerful media mogul’.  Unfortunately his influence is geared to support extreme conservative positions.

I agree that that if Canadian law has prevented Fox News from operating there, we could do with such a law here.

Ad astra

August 3. 2012 11:34 AM

Ad astra

You are right when you say: “Murdoch always says he doesn't  tell his editors what to publish, He doesn't have to, they just know.”  The McKnight book documents how Murdoch carefully picks editors that share his views of the world, and will sack them if they write contrarian editorials.

You are right about Greg Sheridan.  He knows the party line.

Thanks for noticing the misspelling of ‘Leveson’.  Correction made.

Ad astra

August 3. 2012 11:53 AM


Coalition 'cute' shoots itself in foot.

With Shouldabeen smirking over his shoulder, and waving what appears to be 2 or 3 pages of A4 paper ("Coalition announcing policies", says ABC New Breakfast, can you imagine the shellacking a Labot minister would get for two page 'policies'?), Warren Truss made an ass of himself this morning, and - surprise - the Coalition's policymakers generally by example, in one go.

First up he namecalled his fellow agricultural land control Coalition policy committee members as "Ministers". Apparently they, including 'Treasurer' Hockey and 'Foreign Minister' Julie Bishop, are in government??? Did you notice?

Cute? No, plug stupid.

But that was without trying to be cute. That was yet to come. Warren Truss, cutest guy in the cute Coalition, demonstrating just how much 'work' Coalition policy-fudgers put into policy-making, ran past the assembled media some weird and wacky rules from around the world demonstrating how other countries handle foreigners buying their agricultural land.

And jolly wheezes they were, with Tony Abbott smirking loonily over Truss's shoulder. The jolliest wheeze of all was Truss telling us that in New Zealand, foreigners may not buy more than 5 hectares of "agricultural land", and should that land include "sea views", then a non-Kiwi was restricted to a purchase of 0.2 hectares. Smirks all across the three Coalition luminaries, because Jivin' Joe Hockey was there, too, champing at the bit to run his opening line past all assembled - "Since 1788 Australia has relied on foreign investment...". See, Joe did pay attention in History Class. Of course, the fact that there was no "Australia" in 1788, 1789, or 1900 for that matter, since the nation only federated as 'Australia' in 1901, is something that maybe slipped past Joe. Unlike lunch.

Back to New Zealand and circumscribed agricultural land purchases. Remember '5 hectares', or '0.2 with an ocean view'? Remember the film "Avatar"? Directed by an American fellow, James Cameron, who's just purchased a little writing shack on New Zealand's North Island, so that he can knock out the scripts for Avatar 2 and 3.

James has to work out just what he's going to use his new 1,000 hectares of Kiwi agricultural land  www.business-standard.com/.../ for, because at the moment it's running cattle, and his family are vegetarians, but whatever they decide, they do have to make their property come up with some agricultural produce, because that is one of the terms of their purchase of it.

Perhaps James can mull over what to grow by gazing out at his new property's ocean view?

The Coalition are apparently already elected, as the concept of 'Shadow Treasurer', 'Shadow Minster for Foreign Affairs', just does not apply to conservatives in waiting. That's arrogance, that's getting ahead of themselves. That's to be expected.

But politicians who provide skinny policy documents they describe as being the framework for shaping our national interest, all Australians' national interest, and illustrate just how cogent the work they've put into the policies is by demonstrating how wacky other countries' laws are, and get their examples wrong, well, that's stupidity. That's also to be expected.

But when they do both of these with 'aren't we cute' smirks on their faces, 'aren't we so witty and hardworking to have chased down these funny little examples from all around the wide world' in their Year 10 school project body language, then we are see the sort of cute that shoots itself in the foot.

If this is what can be expected by this mob in government, who'll help the national interest then? Not these galahs, because, let's face it, we saw this sort of stuff under Howard, and Shouldabeen promises the country he'll take us all back to Howard.

Cute. Stupid. Lazy. Arrogant. Shouldabeen.

Whichever deity you call on... help us!


August 3. 2012 12:04 PM

Ad astra

Talk Turkey
What can I say.  You lavish so much praise you make me blush.  Thank you.  To me this was simply another piece, but it was written from the heart.  You and I share, along with many others who comment here, a loathing of much of our current media, which we see as a grossly biased player in the deadly serious business of governing our nation.  Its overt intention is to overturn our elected Government and replace it with an Abbott-led Coalition Government.  Our democracy supports its right to express a preference, but that privilege is perverted every day when journalist after journalist, editorial after editorial distorts the truth, misrepresents the facts, and at times blatantly lies.  Those who corrupt the truth to achieve their purpose stand condemned.

Labor is fighting not just the Coalition – that is a relatively straightforward task – it has also to fight dishonesty and corruption in the media that perverts and debases our democracy.  

You will recall that in May I wrote Julia Gillard can defeat Tony Abbott.  But how does she neutralize Rupert Murdoch?  This is a theme to which we will all need to return as the 2013 election approaches.  We need to expose, as best we can, every instance of dishonesty and misrepresentation. We need to embarrass journalists by drawing attention to their inaccuracies and biases.  They do read in the Fifth Estate.  Many, if not all, have professional standards and pride in their work.  They will respond to criticism so long at it is fair and backed with facts.


Thank you for posting T S Eliot’s The Hollow Men.  How apt!


Ad astra

August 3. 2012 12:08 PM

Ad astra

I endorse your admiration of our resident poets: Patriciawa, Talk Turkey and Truth Seeker.

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August 3. 2012 12:23 PM


Again AA you are the light in the darkness that pervades our very lives, don't turn off the light.
Well written & so bloody true & frightening, I think we have hope. We can gather from the comments here we are not alone in our rage & desire to get on top of these despicable people. Murdoch must be brought to account.

Talk Turkey
"who doesn't have fantasies of physically snotting that poisonous poodle Pyne, kicking him in the ribs and gaoling him for complicity in attempted sedition?" I do DAILY!!

p.s. I hope you stay on top of your medical problems & all's well in the long term, I wanted to post on the last article from AA but the door closed on me yesterday. [I'm in a similar situation that has been going on for 33yrs!! S8's daily, crushed, nearly killed in an industrial accident when 21, broken back the rest is history & a not good one at that, I feel for you TT]

I too think that ABC24 are talking about the whinging wing nut like he is already the F_cking PM.
As we have seen, no point in complaining. If we do all you get is a GET STUFFED email as so eloquently summarised by Jane last week.

You are a real ray of sunshine AA. All the commentators are pretty damn good too.


August 3. 2012 12:46 PM

Ad astra

Your reference to the fate of Conrad Black and his empire is apt.  Murdoch’s empire is vast and in many parts.   The UK side looks to be under the greatest threat, the US and Australian side much less so.  No one can predict how it will all turn out.  If I had to guess, I suspect it may turn out to be a slow crumble.

I'll be back after lunch.

Ad astra

August 3. 2012 12:57 PM

42 long

   I think there will be consequential repercussions for Murdoch in the states, from the UK situation. The Media in australia is in disarray so it would be hard to predict anything with accuracy.From OUR point of view could it get much worse?  SO ANY change should bring some potential benefit.

42 long

August 3. 2012 01:04 PM


Ad astra. Great article I could feel the passion! I feel energised.

And hey great word perspicacious (I had to look that one up - love it)

The media maketh and the media breaketh - that is Murdoch's mantra. Murdoch didn't like Nelson or Turnbull either because they were too leftish for him, and so I believe he gave them a particularly bad time of it as well.

He loves Abbott because 1) he is not that bright 2) he'll do and say anything to get power 3) he is a religious zealot (so that deminishes his brain cells) and 3) he knows how to run and duck (both literally and metaphorically) 4) he's a bloke!

Now to Lyn's links!


August 3. 2012 01:50 PM


Many thanks, as always Lyn, for my morning's reading so far!

TT, good to see you up and at it in spite of it all!  I join your enthusiasm for having Truth Seeker posting here with us at TPS.

Truth Seeker, your arrival is most serendipitous.  Lynchpin over at the Poll Bludger had asked if I had written any lyrics, which sadly I hadn't!  Still he did persist with me and I tried adapting the lines of Working Class Man (Cold Chisel and Jimmy Barnes)  polliepomes.wordpress.com/.../

Lynchpin did record that and as well composed music for another of my earlier pomes at polliepomes.wordpress.com/.../

We had encouraging comments from bloggers about the need for some modern day leftie lyrics, but are far from having them performed yet.  The boat people song is ours entirely of course, but we need permission to use the Working Class Man tune, and so far we have had no response to enquiries at all.  Still it's early days and who knows you may know just what we have to do to get a collection of leftie songs off the ground!   You may have some ready to go yourself!  Can you advise us anyway?


August 3. 2012 03:12 PM

Ad astra

Your reference to the fate of Conrad Black and his empire is apt.  Murdoch’s empire is vast and in many parts.   The UK side looks to be under the greatest threat, the US and Australian side much less so.  No one can predict how it will all turn out.  If I had to guess, I suspect it may turn out to be a slow crumble.

Thank you for your comment.  I share your hope that the MSM becomes a backwater, unless of course it resumes is proper role – providing accurate news and reasoned opinion based on verifiable facts.

Ad astra

August 3. 2012 03:18 PM

Ad astra

Thank you for your most generous comments.  You are right, TPS continues to attract great commentators who bring so much to the site.  Lyn’s links have made TPS a hub for the Fifth Estate.  With her Twitterverse there is a vast amount of information accessible here.

I seldom visit The Drum; only when Lyn links to an article there.  There seems to have been a concerted campaign of getting extreme right wing advocates into all sorts of media slots – an echo of Tea Party tactics.

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August 3. 2012 03:51 PM

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Hi Lyn
What a lovely compliment is ‘Supercalifragilistic’.  Thank you.

The links to Newman’s behaviour gives us a glimpse into what an Abbott Coalition Government would be like.  I hope all Queenslanders take note.

Why is the media so exercised about the latest poll numbers, supposedly leaked from Labor sources?  Of course there would be an electoral wipeout for Labor if those figures pertained at an election; that is a mathematical certainty.  The fallacy is in believing that these numbers will be the ones around in late 2013.  I haven’t seen much of Mark Riley lately; is he still Channel Seven’s chief political reporter?

I see the old, old story about Julia Gillard during her union days, the one that resulted in Glenn Milne getting the boot from the ABC and News Limited, is being resurrected.  I guess if there’s nothing else to tip on her, they dig to the bottom of their dirt barrel.

2353 says: “Lyn - even the descriptions of your links are informative, thank you.”  I agree wholeheartedly.  It is those descriptors that add so much value to your links.  We know they take a lot of time to compile, and are eternally grateful for this excellent work you do for us all.

I’m still to read your morning links.  It’s been a busy day!

Ad astra

August 3. 2012 04:06 PM

Ad astra

I suppose this flurry of ‘policy’ activity is to give substance to Tony Abbott’s utterances in China.  There is always an opportunistic edge to them – Abbott knows that the average Joe will applaud him if he seems to be resisting ‘selling off the farm’.  But investors will despair and his Nationals mates will need to be placated.  Their preferences are still a mystery; listening to Barnaby Joyce on ABC TV a couple of days ago left me no wiser.  He is amazing.  He can talk gobbledygook non-stop yet still earn from his colleagues the tag ‘great retail communicator’.  

Ad astra

August 3. 2012 04:08 PM

Ad astra

Thank you so much for your complimentary remarks.  You give me great encouragement.  I agree that ”All the commentators are pretty damn good too.”.  That, and Lyn’s links is what makes TPS what it is.

Any success with your Gravatar issue?

Ad astra

August 3. 2012 04:16 PM

Ad astra

Thank you for your kind remark; you are right about the passion that propelled this piece.  It goes back to the beginning of this blog when I added the strapline ‘Putting politicians and commentators to the verbal sword’.  The media was my main target, and is even more so now, deteriorating as it is every month.

42 long
You may be right, but progress in the US to bring Murdoch to account seems slow.  It makes me wonder whom he has in his pocket there.  We now know he had many in the UK – Blair and Cameron just for starters!

Ad astra

August 3. 2012 04:37 PM

Ad astra

Thank you for your complimentary remarks.

I too would enjoy seeing Government members hitting back at journalists making stupid remarks or asking obtuse, unintelligent or disrespectful questions, as JG did with: ‘Don’t write crap’.  

Sabra Lane is an example of impertinent questioning. If anyone doubts this, read the transcripts of her interviewing Wayne Swan on 1 August.


Here’s a couple of examples to get you going:

”SABRA LANE: Australia and the United Arab Emirates have signed a deal overnight to pave the way for Australian exports of uranium. At a time when the Middle East is so unstable is that really such a wise thing to do?

Sabra must she believes she has the edge on wisdom.

”SABRA LANE: Mr Swan you're set to deliver a speech tonight where you're going to talk about how Bruch [I think that was supposed to be ‘Bruce’] Springsteen's songs and lyrics have inspired you. How is the decline of industries in New Jersey in the United States relevant to Australia?

Yes Treasurer, explain yourself to me, Sabra Lane, ABC reporter of note.

And later:

”SABRA LANE: If your policies have been so strongly influenced by the likes of the Boss and Cold Chisel, why is it that the working class has walked away from Labor?”

An irrelevant backhander to end an acerbic interview, during which Wayne Swan exhibited a level of courtesy not matched by his interviewer.

Ad astra

August 3. 2012 04:57 PM

Ad astra

There is a follow-up to the Uthers Say piece referred to in this piece.  It is Lyn's second link.

It is here: utherssay.com/.../

Beware, your blood pressure may rise at the arrogance of PvO, which seems to have no bounds.

Ad astra

August 3. 2012 05:29 PM


Hi Ad and Everybody

Twitterati for you.  You will see the MSM will not lay down and die, making hay over a Bill Shorten meat pie, reported by none other than Samantha Maiden. Journalist  anyone??

Read the first tweet  & follow link,  some ugly people out there an “unproductive old cow” added to Julia’s other insults, when or where will it end.  

Agnes Mack‏
OK everyone, we've stuffed our faces with pie jokes. Time to get serious about this reprehensible sexist piggery http://bit.ly/OugkRR

Marian Dalton‏
Who was the smart-arse journo who thought handing Shorten a pie was funny?

Latika Bourke ‏
OMG What? Australia's largest Beef Producer 'jokes' PM Gillard's an 'unproductive old cow?' http://latika.me/MgHwC1

dump at sea, burn to death, shot at, smash with baseball bat, kick to death, now to be minced at the abattoir like an old cow. Death of a PM

Mark ‏
Newspoll w/end and no Ruddstoration leadershit!!......Time to beat up some old shite and 'pie in the sky' faux outrage!! #auspol

Media to be charged to report from Parliament
Under the proposal, television networks with space in the Parliamentary Annexe would be charged a combined total of $25,620 a year, based on a rate of $300 per square metre “inclusive of energy and cleaning costs”.

Susan McDonald‏
The #Insiders panel this Sunday August 5 is SMH's @lenoretaylor, Courier Mail's Dennis Atkins @dwabriz & Global Mail's @MikeSeccombe 9am ABC

Stephen Koukoulas‏
Since the carbon tax started, the ASX is up 3.7% - adding about $41 billion to the value of the market. Should cover a few bills

Australian Politics‏
Foreign investment plan crazy: Reith: FORMER Howard minister Peter Reith has condemned a Coalition plan to incre... http://bit.ly/RfwS4Y

Brisbane Times‏
Premier Newman says public servants must 'wait and see' what jobs will be cut when the budget is handed down http://ow.ly/cHJRN

atikambourke: Link to Coalition's Foreign Investment discussion paper here: http://latika.me/NOa5wf” so it's aspirational not policy #auspol

Queensland Online
Newman on courts: 'Just you wait and see' http://bit.ly/QFAlbh #qld

Coalition says police should probe union scandal, but Labor rejects claims as 'ancient stuff'

THE Coalition says police should investigate claims by Ralph Blewitt, a former AWU official and alleged bagman for a financial scandal linked to the then boyfriend of Julia Gillard, who wants to give evidence about his role in the scam and the conduct of others.

Premier Campbell Newman blames public service leaks for creating uncertainty in government workforce

Newman blames public service leaks for creating uncertainty in government workforce #qldpol" Everyone else blames 2000+ job cuts.

Australian Labor‏
Campbell Newman can do $110 million to upgrade Qld racetracks (www.racingqueensland.com.au/.../Newman-Government-delivers-Gold-Coast-racing-upgrade) but can't do $20 million for a #NDIS launch site.

Bill Shorten in political pie fight
Ms Wong told 3AW that Mr Shorten had entered her shop at 5pm last night and was agitated when he was told that she was out of pies

Frances Farmer‏
What a pile of shit, as if he'd lose it over a pie. RT @samanthamaiden: Bill Shorten's ANGRY PIE VIDEO. http://www.3aw.com.au/blogs/neil-mit

John Hanna‏@
Shopkeeper hands over security footage of customers to media? Remind me NEVER to shop there. www.theaustralian.com.au/.../story-fn59niix-

Kabuki Geek‏
Staff at North Carlton Foods apparently make offensive remarks about the PM - Best to avoid.

North Carlton Foods
577 Lygon Street Carlton North VIC 3054   plus.google.com/.../about

Judge 'n Jury _
@Pamela_November The media is only interested in Shorten's pies, and Swannies Springsteen. Policy? Does policy discussion get more likes?

Simon Copland‏
THIS IS WHY EVERYBODY HATES THE MEDIA. www.abc.net.au/.../4175738

Geoff ‏
Abbott's roads funding pledge ridiculed! www.abc.net.au/.../4175314 Enough said!


August 3. 2012 05:29 PM

Ad astra

Hi Lyn
I’ve been though this morning’s links.  I thought Mungo MacCallum’s piece was a good read, nailing on the way PvO’s miscalculation, apparently acknowledging in the end: ”that her original "poor decision" has been vindicated.”  Can you believe the arrogance.  Yes!


Ben Eltham’s piece was good and had a link to Wayne Swan’s John Button Lecture: that concluded: ”It is with this in mind that I've called this evening's lecture Land of Hope and Dreams.   Because that's what I think this country is. A land of hope and dreams, but they must be hopes and dreams for everyone, not just for a fortunate few.”  That sums it up pretty well.


Miglo’s piece on the ABC was spot on. cafewhispers.wordpress.com/.../

Daniel Palmer’s piece about how Abbott could lose the ‘unlosable election’ is good reading. www.climatespectator.com.au/.../why-abbott-could-lose-unloseable-election

He begins with a truth we have been uttering here for many months: ”It is impossible to forecast a federal election more than twelve months out, especially as we can’t even be sure of the identity of the two candidates. That hasn’t stopped people from trying however, with no shortage of pundits lining up to call Opposition leader Tony Abbott 'Australia’s next prime minister'. The polls suggest they will be proven right, but polls can fluctuate wildly in the year of an election.”

It ended with the timely reminder: ” A week may be a long time in politics, but 15 months is practically an eternity.”

We should all note Stephen Koukoulas’ piece: Australia’s best economic fundamentals since 1964


Ad astra

August 3. 2012 05:37 PM


You are just as guilty though with that piece of anti-Greens rot about not making dirty deals over the treatment of asylum seekers because you lazily assumed the MSM reports were true.

The Greens believe we should uphold the law, that is a good thing but was written up as a bad thing because the MSM didn't listen to the actual debate or read the actual bill and neither did you.


August 3. 2012 05:39 PM


What drives me the craziest though is the MSM report that Gillard and the ALP can't get across their message, because the MSM are too busy claiming they can't get across the message to report the message.


August 3. 2012 05:39 PM

Ad astra

Hi Lyn
Your Twittterati shows the emptiness of the Fourth Estate with the ‘Shorten pie affair’, and its venom in promulgating the 'unproductive old co' jibe.  There seems to be no depth to which it will not stoop.

Ad astra

August 3. 2012 05:50 PM


Coalition's "cute" is catching, as is its stupidity.

ABC News shining light Latika Bourke told us this afternoon that community reaction to the Coalition's agricultural land discussion paper would be filtered through "Treasurer Joe Hockey's office".

Apparently they pay her.


August 3. 2012 06:15 PM


This "new" piece of newslimedited "scandal" involving one; Blewitt and Julia Gillard's early career.....Where do they drag these pieces of tragic castaway up from?...are they old alkies thirsting for another flagon to quell the drouth? Above all else, they must be bloody tragic to try and flog these dead horses...AND Murdoch!...surely his very mother must be squirming and regretting the unavailability of safe abortions in her day!
It is time the govt' got serious with these traitors..for traitors they are..we have a democracy in place..it worked perfectly when we had a hung election...didn't we all praise the system....until!...yes, the little turd got flushed and now he and his sychophants want to stink up the nation.
Why haven't the federal police automatically investigated these acts of sedition?...they seemed to be all over Haneef and Hicks, yet here under their very noses we have traitors plotting AND acting in broad daylight to bring down the govt'...if that isn't an act of sedition, one has to wonder what is!?
Murdoch..: Personae Non Gratae....we don't need turncoat troublemakers in this country. I see they cancelled "Captain Emhads'" visa, why not Murdochs'?


August 3. 2012 06:47 PM


Hi Ad and Everybody

Thankyou to our Bloggers they make the MSM look useless. Don't read the comments some will just destroy your faith in the human race.

Michael Latika is paid to tweet by the ABC she has upset a lot of Tweeters.  Latika tweets all day every single utterance of Tony Abbott and the Coalition she has virtually admitted her voting intentions.

DISGRACE: The Australian’s false implication of embezzlement at PM shames our great newspaper

As originally reported by one-time high-flying now unemployed journo Glenn Milne at the time, the worst that could be reasonably said of the PM was she was dating the wrong bloke. Conflating that into a sleazy she-must-have-known yarn is pretty harsh even by the harsh standards of VEXNEWS.

When folk like conspiracy theorist and Greensparty preference feeder Stephen Mayne and others who ought know better run out this yarn, while always insisting that everyone involves denies wrongdoing to create their false impression there’s responsible broadcasting/reporting going on, they are left looking very silly. It’s a shame one of the nation’s best newspapers, usually a credit to the company that subsidises it, has descended to this


August 3. 2012 07:22 PM


Warren Truss made an ass of himself this morning,...

Situation normal, then.

What a pack of buffoons they are.

I've been reading more of Can't Do's latest assault on Queensland thanks to Lyn and her wonderful links.

His latest excuse for the mass sackings is that if he didn't sack all those people, every Queenslander would have to cough up an extra $1,000 tax to extricate Qld from the imaginary crippling debt.

Although he had $100+m to upgrade a racecourse.

It apparently never occurred to this financial genius, that when you sack workers there is a multiplier effect. (Probably too dumb to work it out)

They don't catch the bus or train or drive their car to work, so less revenue for public transport and servos.

They don't buy the cup of coffee and/or toasted sanga or bun on their way to work, they don't buy their lunch, so the café owner's takings fall and s/he ends up sacking a couple of employees and on and on it goes.

So the cretin Newman ends up with even less revenue to pay off his imaginary debt.

And now he's decided to close an unspecified number of courthouses, mainly in rural areas. Is there any end to his stupidity?

I read the comments section after stories like this and the anger among Qlders is palpable.

I think any goodwill he may have had, has evaporated except for the barrackers, who will no doubt turn nasty when he treats them to the same treatment he's dishing out to other people.


August 3. 2012 08:17 PM


Marilyn @ 5.39pm

Too true ....... they're too busy writing stories about the story they wrote yesterday which was about the story they wrote the previous day,  which was about the story they wrote the previous day,  which was about the story they wrote the previous day etc etc ad nauseam.

And of course the original story that sparked all the following stories was a lie, or was just a make-up anyway.

I think we are in a transitional period at the end of which the press will have ceased to exist or will be drastically different. So at the moment most press journos don't know what they are, and the default has become that they are mere googlers and copy and pasters.

The days of investigations as the tool in trade of journos ie wearing out shoe leather and running up huge phone bills as they chase up leads and find out actual stories, are already gone.

TV journos are much the same, preferring to cash in on insignificant happenings and blow them up into a "story", which becomes the basis of further variants of stories on the same theme for a few days.

And during the playing out of such paradigms, if some other related event or information emerges which best suits them promoting the 180 degree opposite of their original stance, well that's just not a problem.


August 3. 2012 08:53 PM

Ad astra

The MSM continues to decay.  It may be dead by tomorrow.

I'm calling it a day.  

Ad astra

August 3. 2012 11:04 PM

Truth Seeker

I followed your links, and thought you have done a great job with both sets of lyrics, unfortunately to use someone else's tune opens a huge can of worms on a number of levels.
Many artists do not want to be identified to any political agenda, even though they may well have a leaning towards the party in question.
I personally gave up on trying to publish a song book, using my own system of guitar music, as the licensing  was too hard to organise, although I am still going to publish my guitar music system, soon (hopefully).
I have never written any political songs, as I believe that even though there may be a need, the differing styles of music available may well severely limit the appeal.
In my humble opinion,  the poetical approach appeals to a much broader demographic and, unlike certain types of music, remains timeless.
You certainly have the skills to do both, and facebook and youtube are great formats for getting songs heard, but the experience with Land Down under/ Kookaburra sits in the old gumtree, shows just how careful songwriters have to be, but I applaud your efforts and would encourage you to continue.

Maybe recording an album of performance poetry might be an option worth considering.

My ability to sing has been severely impacted by the steroids that I have been on as a result of my illness, so I no longer perform publicly, although I still teach, write and record occasionally.

Sorry that I could not be of more help, but I sincerely believe that with such great talents as Aa's, yours and TT's supporting the ALP as well as the good bloggers of TPS and other sites,
we can show up the media for the biased and soon to be irrelevant right wing hacks that they really are.

Keep up the good work


Truth Seeker

August 4. 2012 12:41 AM


I have declared virtual war on the ABC's 'political journalists'.

"The ABC has gone to Hell."  Never a truer word.

Here we are 5 years after Howard, the maggots he installed have matured pupated and turned into filthy blowflies spreading their filth into every home in the land.

There is no choice about this. The truth is not being told, Right-Wings' lies and distortion on the ABC are its daily stock-in-trade.

Australia is already suffering serious dumbing-down, the 'Science' program Catalyst is a case in point. It is a OOOH-AAHHH bullshit apology for science, a platform for the blond bimbo Jonica Newby, doxy and protege of the ABC's scientific demi-god Robyn Williams, to glorify herself and tell lies about cannabis and help sell her old man's American-owned Ben's canned dog food by devious though not all that well-disguised means. "Doctor" Jonica Newby is a BVS, a bloody vet FFS, about as much claim to being a scientist as Manuel in Fawlty Towers.  

The journalists Ad astra singles out for special mention are obvious, but the behind-the-scenes producers and directors of their offerings, faceless men as ever were, are harder to identify and just as deadly.

We can't do anything much about the commercial bias elsewhere but the ABC has a charter whose conditions it is openly and defiantly flouting. Analbell the slyly-sidling Crabb is a case in point, she flatly insists on talking of the carbon tax, though on every level she knows that that is false. Their mix of spin, ignorance and outright defiance of the principles of the ABC charter means that we are entitled, more, dutybound to take up cudgels, if not swords,  on behalf of the ABC we used to trust and love.

I will be writing more about this and calling for an examination of the particular persons who hired the worst pf them, and the producers and directors, their affiliations and associations, their payments to such as the IPA and Reith, who in fact should be paying the ABC millions for the publicity. (OOOhhhh No,couldn't do that, it would be against our Charter!" Huh.

It is no use sitting around complaining though. It is up to us few to devise a strategy ("astrategy", I typo'd first) to deal with these vipers in our sole public-funded major TV and media player. They must not be tolerated, and it this site's mission to bring them to account, see top of page.


August 4. 2012 03:27 AM


Gigolo the Clown

A man came to a doctor one day, a doctor with a reputation for helping people deal with their problems.

"Doctor," said the man, "I'm fairly well off, I have a good job which uses my special skills, everything I really need, but I just can't seem to enjoy life. Nobody ever seems to understand me. It is making me very depressed. Can you help me?"

The well-meaning doctor beamed, "I think I know just the thing. Last night I saw a performance by the world-famous clown Gigolo. He was so funny, all the people came out looking happy, and with new enthusiasm for their lives. He almost performs miracles in lifting people's spirits! He's doing another performance tonight, I reckon seeing him will give you a fresh outlook on your life!"

Tears of misery welled in the man's eyes.
His voice barely controlled,
softly and brokenly he whispered,
"Doctor - I am Gigolo!"


Well I am so very very proud, I can't tell you, that so many of those who contribute here make comments nearly always complimentary and supportive of my own posts, and telling me that I help lift your spirits. I don't know anything that could give me such pleasure, and I love this site and those who write their honest thoughts here. (Because here there can be no posing, concern trolls get short shrift, sussed as if by that colourless dye in swimming pools that turns bright red when someone pees in the water.) Sincerity shines here like a beacon, it cannot long be pretended.

And unless and until Labor fails at the next election, which I assure you now as always will not happen, I will ALWAYS talk up our great Government, (I'd say 'our great Party' but I must include Oakeshott and Windsor, two of the finest most courageous politicians ever to grace the HoR.) And when I do, be sure, I do it from heart and head both, I have strong reasons for my belief, I'm not in Cloud Cuckoo Land, The ABBORTIANS are!


But for myself, well I do feel a good bit like poor Gigolo atm.
Things aren't real flash for me right now - Oh and btw KHTAGH thank you so much for your post, I am fortunate indeed compared to you, and so many damaged or otherwise long-term disabled people or those with truly chronic pain. But pain and suffering makes us humble and empathetic wih other unfortunates, it is not entirely negative, though it's true, while you're in severe pain that's pretty much all that's on your mind.

But to continue: All was well by Thursday morning, my originally-intended surgery is/was supposed to proceed on Tuesday 7th. I have been wearing the same catheter tube up my penis for a fortnight, poor little fellow's tip is excruciatingly sore, a mere touch with cotton wool hurts! But much worse still is the unexplained agony just inside my bum (sorry folks, but as I said we're all adults here. And the nurses, some of them still students of 18 or so on work experience, are completely unshockable, there is no stupid pretence at 'modesty', if you go through what I'm going through and your cockiness level is still in evidence, well you're more of a stoic than I am.)

Anyway my urine was nice and clear and pale yellow, collecting in ample quantity in the bag strapped to my leg, and though I always feel like I urgently need to pee all the time, at least I knew the catheter was doing its job.

Well the hospital wanted a blood sample and a urine sample 5-6 days before the op on Tuesday, so on Thursday I changed the old catheter bag for a new one, not wanting my current urine to be contaminated by the used bag -(even though I had rinsed it out thoroughly several times) (The same tube stays in place up poor little Dick, only the bag changes.) So off we went, J**** driving, to Clinpath to supply the samples. My blood was taken OK, but when I looked in the new catheter bag, it was completely dry! - And that was 2-3 hours since I changed the bag, it definitely should have had quite a bit of urine in it.


So I rang the office of my urologist-surgeon Dr Q straight away, they said I better go there and get it checked out. Well when I got out of the car to cross the road to the hospital, I saw that a small amount of very bloody urine had made it to the bag, only a spoonful but not pretty. The solo nurse put me on a bed in a sort of broom cupboard room, and proceeded to decant the little bit of bloody urine and took it away for analysis. I was trembling violently with pain and apprehension I must say, well the nurse was gone for half an hour, if it hadn't been for J**** there, no emergency bell, I would have felt completely abandoned. During the wait (and I was so obviously really unwell) I said to J****, nobody thought to take my temperature or BP, listen my heart or anything. I felt a bit shocked by that.

But at last the nurse came back, with an 18-y-o as I mentioned, and they proceeded to syringe the tubing, suck out the backed-up heavily bloody urine, (it was more than a litre) and flush the (punctured, remember?) bladder several times with saline solution. It hurt like Hell, sometimes when they squirted stuff up me it felt like an internal electric shock!

Am I boring you? Sorry, but there's more.

By this time, feeling like I'd gone a dozen rounds on the losing end with Joe Frazier, they put me in a bed in a proper room, J**** still waiting with me, until Dr Q took time out from theatre to visit me. He really just said hello, told me to drink lots of water, assured me all was comme il faut, that the blood wasn't so unusual, and the surgery would go ahead as planned on Tuesday. And said I could go home,which really surprised me and J****.

Well by now my unblocked catheter was working again, nice pale yellow urine too and plenty of it. I felt lot better too, and sat up late writing a post. About four AM Friday I went to bed.

But Dam, when I woke up around 9, I had a bagful of very dark and bloody pee. A bit freaky I must say. So I rang the hospital: Nope the urologist said, just drink lots of water.

Well then I rang a certain Ad astra, an eminent previous-and still-well-informed medical practioner of LONG standing. I wondered aloud if it was normal for a catheter to be in place for so long (not really he said, no). The question of possible urinary tract/bladder infection came up, and I expressed a degree of surprise that I had not been prescribed antibiotics for the long wait with the catheter in place - though I make clear that I am a stickler for judicious antibiotic use; against viruses antibiotics is as much use as a machinegun for repelling mozzies.

Well Ad said, Dr Q has had long experience of this sort of thing, he wouldn't be into operating on you on Tuesday if he wasn't content. Well erm I said, but he hasn't had long experience of my particular problem, namely that he had torn a hole in my bladder, an event he said he'd never done before. I pointed out to Ad that 3 or 4 days with a catheter was one thing, more than a fortnight quite another. I worried aloud that I might have a bladder infection by now. [I had just thrown out a bag of half-a-dozen slices of Helga's Pumpkin-seed bread, it keeps well for 4 or 5 days but by 2-3 weeks it was so mouldy even the spoggies wouldn't eat it.] Ad got the analogy of course, and that was about the end of the conversation.

Dam I had hardly put the phone down from Ad when the Hospital rang, Sorry Mr B, you have a bladder infection, you must start a flucoxacillin course at once, and come in on Monday when we will give you intravenous antibiotic . . which I've never had before, even in heart bypass surgery, it sounds ominous.

So now I'm scared stiff that the infection may reach, or already be in my kidneys . . . And that is VERY scary.  

I don't understand why with my own very sketchy understanding of medicine that I could predict accurately what was likely to happen in the presence of a long-inserted catheter in the absence of antibiotic cover, where a highly-reputed urologist did not, but there it is. Plainly it's easier to prevent such infections than to arrest them once they've taken hold, anyway I would bet that the surgery won't go ahead on Tuesady as planned, I'll have my heart in my mouth if they do, OR if they don't!

I do hope Dog likes my kidneys!



August 4. 2012 04:46 AM


Today Lenore Taylor is prattling about the non-existent stalemate in refugee law and the Australian has some strange story about families helping their family members escape Afghanistan because they have no other way to do it, saying it is not illegal and then calling it smuggling.


August 4. 2012 04:53 AM


Do I really expect anybody to want to read all that stuff?
I really don't know.

But anyway, for me, writing is the most therapeutic thing in the world. And trying to improve the World's outlook, by the Power of Me. Well that's the theory. Much of my verse including two BIG books (unpublished) of rhyming verse is really sincerely just that, trying to educate kids to educate adults to care for our native species in particular. Much despair there.  

Subjects, I skip around like a joey kangaroo really trying out.(If you haven't seen that well it's amazing, just crazy)

But as for Ad astra no-one can hold a candle to his writing, let alone his answers to everyone, kind and tolerant and wise, he really is a model for any decent human to respect.
He is wise enough to know the difference between flattery and geuinely sincere compliments, and compliments come free, and it is hardly possible to write anything about Ad that isn't complimentary. So blush away Ad astra, but whether they/we say it fulsomely or sparingly, everybody not just TT thinks exactly the same, so there.  

I dare to hope that this site will be important in small but important ways. It already is anyway, but it is more than a letterbox, it is a site with a mission, and an experiment in communication all the time. The points of view, the way malicious posters are handled. There really is no template here, The Political Sword is dynamic and open-ended and ever-changing, and it is a unique ongoing record of Australian political history, unbroken for at least all the nearly 2 years I have contributed to it.

I think we've got the manners right actually, well pretty much. I treat disrespect with disrespect, I never pretended otherwise, if you don't like that then suck eggs, I hope everybody takes the same stand really.  Here we're free to say what we want - except for the most uncalled-for personally insulting posts, and then that's Ad's decision alone. ToM can feel pretty lucky imo he still gets posted here, I wouldn't pull him (I'd just taunt him cos I'm smarter Smile) but many other writers here would.

So where it develops in the next few months is of great moment I reckon. It will be needed as never before in the last quarter of this government's term.

It's August. I have always said

Abborrtt remember the Ides of September - six weeks.

I predict that just about then the bumbling will come to a head, and the rumbling will start, and Abbortt will begin to be nailed at last. Dead ash come December. OR a lame-duck Opposition, unsure of its allegiances, policy-bereft, with Abbortt increasingly the object of derision.  


August 4. 2012 08:16 AM


Hi TT, not sure how SA time works but I,ve been lying awake here for hours and if I'd known what you were going through out there i'd have sent some loving thoughts across and tried to metaphorically hold your hand.

I am astounded at your stoic determination to keep thinking and have your brilliant brain beat that body of yours.  In the middle of all that pain you can still get us thinking too.  

You are so right about the awful Abbort who gets worse by the day.  Last night's news showed him almost skeletal and with very obviously dyed and increasingly sparse hair, his huge ears flapping around and his mad eyes staring out at us as he tried to stir up the xenophobes of country Queensland about Chinese investment there.   Surely his appearance alone should have us rid of him!  


August 4. 2012 08:36 AM


Bad Abbott says the Jesuit Father.

One of the supposed planks of the 'fair dinkumness' of Tony Abbott is his 'muscular Christianity'.

A serving priest in Abbott's Church, who also works at Shouldabeen's old school, had a few words to say about the Leader of the Opposition, reported in the Sydney Morning Herald today.

"Dissing wisdom of the Abbott

The rector of Sydney's most high profile Catholic boys' school has gone into print criticising Old Boy Tony Abbott over his attitude to refugees.

In a piece in the latest St Ignatius (Riverview) newsletter, Father Ross Jones, SJ slammed Abbott for saying he would tow illegal boats back into Indonesian waters.

''He would then steal the bulk of their fuel, to ensure they stayed there. How demeaning a mission for this nation's navy. The navy is called the senior service. Some service. When challenged on talkback radio recently that this was un-Christian, Mr Abbott simply retorted that he didn't think it was a very Christian thing for asylum seekers to come in by the back door and not the front door.''

Commenting on the recent parliamentary debate on refugee policy, Father Jones said that the arguments were ''mean-spirited … lamentable … and lacking in moral fibre.''

Riverview is run by the Jesuits, who are unafraid of a good stoush. After the 2010 election campaign, principal Shane Hogan wrote that neither Abbott nor Julia Gillard had showed Ignatian leadership, adding that the art of debate was ''not to condemn your opponent but to point out why your arguments were more credible''.

Several parents rang up threatening to cancel their cheques.

This time around, Father Ross Jones should simply send out copies of a new book called Tony Speaks! The Wisdom of the Abbott, published this week by Black Inc. In it, we are reminded of a few choice quotes from the former seminarian.

But the final word goes to one of Abbott's three daughters, who in 2009 called him a ''gay, lame, churchy loser''.

Asked why she had done this, Abbott replied: ''Yeah, well, look, she knows me well …'' "

The 'free run' Shouldabeen's long luxuriated in daily shreds.


August 4. 2012 09:35 AM



As you probably know the Jesuits have long been quite radical within the RC church as far as speaking their minds. The Pells and Ratzingers would have no time for them at all.

Apparently the Jesuits are historically a totally independent and self sufficient mob within the church, and more, as I'll explain in the next paras.

Some may have heard of Christopher Geraghty. He retired a couple of years back as a NSW Supreme Court Judge. previously he had been a RC priest for about 15 years. He has written at least 3 books disclosing  (putting well deserved shit on ) the workings of the church. His second book is The Church Factory, the inner view of seminaries as told from the perspective of a wise mature head who experienced the inside.

I won't be able to tell the whole story but the relevant point here is that to ask questions, seek to discuss, or debate any aspect of what they were taught (ie to demonstrate a brain, some initiative, and a sense of what's right) resulted in actually being booted out. True! No-one except the compliant could remain.

Now it doesn't take too much brain work to understand how the 60-90 age group RC clerics have stuffed up the priestly sexual assault matters as disclosed on Four Corners does it. Literally they are by definition dopes. Their endurance of and graduation from the seminaries as described by Geraghty, and their remaining in their roles for the next 40 to 50 years (unlike Geraghty) defines them as being drones, compliant, and prepared to forgo (allegedly) not only sex, but also the exercise of their brain.

In this regard, Jesuits are different because those qualities that are devalued in seminaries is valued by them.

TT Comrade

I am saddened to hear of your vicissitudes, but glad that you can still bash the keyboard so well. I am talking to you because of your well known "respect" for the churches and Dog Albitey.

Judge Geraghty's books include Cassocks in the Wilderness, The Priest Factory, and another released a few months ago. They are cheaply available through fishpond.com.au

I am telling you this because I know you would absolutely enjoy the books and be well in sync with the author's perspective. And you'd get a few extra tidbits and insight into how bad things really are in the inner sanctums. I stress ...... they are NOT religious books, in fact to the contrary.

While on the subject, a book called Poe John XXIII by Thomas Cahill is also a must read for the likes of you TT Comrade. Again it is anything but a religious book. It tells with great insight and riveting interest about the inner sanctums and politics and factional brawls within the Vatican, and how they were faced and coped with by the only decent human pope there ever was.

There are extraordinary insights into John XXII, his pauper-ish upbringing, his accidental election when faction voting went wrong in the Sistene chapel, and most interestingly  his role in WW2 whereby he personally saved the lives of many thousands of jewish people. ( he personally arranged the supply and distribution of false papers, using forged birth certificates signed, fraudulently signed off by the church)

Of course Ratzinger is the most conservative pope since, and with his close mate Pell (yes, really) is assiduously undoing every contribution John XXIII made. If only to understand what sort of prick Ratzinger ie the current Pope Benedict is, it is essential to read this book. Ratzinger is the total opposite of John XXIII.

I have yet to convince my lapsed RC brother (who is a lurker and a long term occasional commenter at TPS) to read these books but I am still working on this essential aspect of his education and edification.


August 4. 2012 09:39 AM


Well Patricia you've done me proud anyway, Thank You, to hear of Abbortt's increasingly threadbare appearance is a tonic (no pun intended).

Btw there is nothing stoic about me, on the contrary when I'm alone I am quite likely (and often to my own surprise) to SCREAM at the walls, like NO-O-O-O-O!. It doesn't help much. When J**** is home I just whinge and whimper and moan. A lot.

Michael, you too help me feel better, news of Fr Jones' condemnation of Abbortt's stance on AS is Gold.

Nasking and DMW, everybody would like to hear from you, I know that at least one of you has medical probs of his own, well, I am empathetic, be sure!


August 4. 2012 10:25 AM


Here is a copy of the email I sent to Mr. Farley of AAco. meats.. concerning his comment about Julia Gillard and an old cow.

Given your status as an old fart and a bag full of hot air, you better be careful you are not shipped off to the Bureau of Meterology to be used as a hot air balloon!....But then again, you'd only have to open your mouth (sphincter) and the air would be lost...so there...I guess you would be less than useless in ANY capacity!
Kindest regards....Joe.


August 4. 2012 10:35 AM


I agree with your assessment of the MSM and the way Australia has been "sold out" to a few vested interests.
What I don't understand is why the Labor government insists that the media are not a problem. Why do senior ministers like Craig Emerson keep on saying there is nothing wrong over at the ABC for instance. Data collected and published by Independent Australia clearly shows media bias towards the coalition ?


August 4. 2012 12:06 PM

42 long

  Better the assessment comes from other than ALP who are condemned for 'whingeing" . I can understand Emmerson not falling for it.
  They are definately trying to do a job on Shorten. You would think . Bringing out the BIG guns ERIC A over a soft microwaved pie. Well in Melbourne a SOFT pie is a big deal mate. This is one of the great food places of the world.

42 long

August 4. 2012 12:17 PM


Yes, Steve...I've wondered on that about the ABC. I think we all have noticed the seemingly deliberate stupidifying of the ABC. replete with those dicky-dinky balloon promos! I feel I can see that Howard suckole ; Scott's fingerprints all over it!
Christ knows I have written to several ministers over the ABC. and it's taking the piss out of the govt'.
But I don't think I am giving any secrets away when I state that they better do something about the national broadcaster before the next election or they won't have a leg to stand on let alone a communicated platform!
I remember those "Town Hall" debates at the last election where they set Julia Gillard up...and there off the side of the stage was none other than Uhlmann and Grattan along with the other filth giggling and smirking.....real professionals I don't think!


August 4. 2012 12:55 PM

42 long

  It's becomming very clear to me that the ABC is being destroyed under the Murdoch RULES. He wants the overseas broadcasting rights. (Remember the tender that conroy aborted)
   All the evidence you need is already out there , working as directed from the top. When it is all over He will be suitably rewarded when Pope-Abbort reigns. It is all the normal ABC staffers who will lose. We the ordinary people who used to DEPEND on the ABC are disenfranchised. We have already lost. Who Bloody cares. Rupert gets his way HE always does.
   The ABC will have lost it's adherents and the others have never wanted it to exist. Perfect Finale.

42 long

August 4. 2012 01:21 PM


42 long well said.
I agree unfortunately we have lost where it comes to the ABC. There was a glimmer of a chance with Rudd getting rid of the right wing plants when he got elected. Along with the states health issue that he promised to sort out, it all got lost in the dust of him running around the world going "look at me look at me I can speak Chinese" even if your national language isn't Mandarin.
Had he kept his ego in check he maybe still be running things [his control freak tendencies aside]. This is the type of thing that frightens the shiet out of me with the whinging wing nut.
  If a person tike Rudd gets drunk on power & control imagine what the wing nut will do. It will be like out of the old movies on the bible etc.

       "Bow to me underlings behold your MASTER & savior I control the heavens & earth, come forth my disciples Gina, Twiggy, Clive & take your rewards in slaves, Rupert your reward will be the ABC"

AA, as you can see new Avatar not here but is on all other sites, not the worry.


August 4. 2012 02:28 PM


Hi Ad

Here is the Twitterverse:-

PM compared to cow by cattle chief

Gavin Heaton‏
stevethompson49: Some Australian men just can not handle the idea of a woman in the top job. www.dailytelegraph.com.au/.../story-

An unusual team; but Swan, Springsteen win gold, Laurie Oakes

"Old-cow" slag-man should say sorry to PM Gillard or be deemed a pig #auspol http://bit.ly/Oxl74Y

Peter Pyke‏
'We share your pain', [Qld LNP HealthMin] Borg says. Oh but you may, come next election. www.warwickdailynews.com.au/.../

Chris Morris‏
Mark Latham writes a surprisingly good appraisal of Andrew Bolt www.afr.com/.../the_sure_footed_mr_bolt_0QIMGk4DGJ5o3yr79Ui0CL #auspol #ozcot

The BBG ‏  Michelle Grattan
Real battles lie within Abbott's own camp - Sydney Morning Herald news.google.com/.../url://www.smh.com.au/.../...own-camp-20120803-23kw1.html #auspol

Any pretense it is not the Female factor about PM @JuliaGillard has been blown away by Mr. Farley's "PM a non-productive old cow" statement

Ed Husic‏
Jess_Irvine takin' no prisoners in her piece on IT price differences in today's @SMH #FairIT4OZ http://fb.me/1C1o2uqXl

Frank Calabrese‏
ABCNews24 are Authorised by Brian Loughnane, Liberal Party of Australia, Cnr Blackall & Macquarie Streets, Barton ACT 2600

Frank Calabrese‏
I have to do my duty to ensure Their ABC comply with the Electoral Act considering they are indulging in Party Political Ads

Australian News‏
Commonwealth, tobacco firms could pay more: Roxon: Attorney-General Nicola Roxon says higher co... http://bit.ly/Qp1vn5 #ausnews

Tony Mahe Ross Gittins
This should be compulsory reading for journalist and commentators on IR #ausunions #fb start with the truth! http://www.smh.com.au/business/-23l0j.html

alex dunnin‏
Outrageous! Govts around the world want miners to pay tax. m.abc.net.au/browse

David Donovan‏
Confirmation James Ashby worked at the Wyatt Roy family farms: www.theaustralian.com.au/.../story-fndckad0-1226337507558

David throw in the Brough connection, a very good family friend of the Roys plus son Wyatt gets Broughs old seat..I smell something

Kabuki Geek‏
Take a look at the LNP mates scoring lucrative roles and what they're being paid. http://is.gd/Cq6MWY#qldpol #auspol

Together Queensland‏@togetherqld
Police academy budget cuts put LNP promises at risk http://shr.tn/1bx5 via @couriermail #qldpol #ausunions


August 4. 2012 02:41 PM


If the following story doesn't make you proud to support the current Labor Federal government then you may as well change your name by deed poll to Mirabella-Newman first thing Monday morning.

"ABC News Online

Australia leading global charge on mining returns
By Stan Correy for Background Briefing

The mining industry blames the Australian Government for encouraging resource nationalism in Africa.

Resource nationalism is the term being used to describe governments wanting a greater return from mining companies – by way of taxes, royalties or other means - in exchange for their right to mine.

Leading the charge on resource nationalism, according to the global mining industry, is resource-rich Australia.

And the industry blames the Australian Government for encouraging the trend.

According to Ernst and Young's most recent survey of global mining, resource nationalism is regarded as the number one risk for the resources sector in 2012.

"You don't own the minerals," Prime Minister Julia Gillard told miners at the Minerals Council of Australia annual dinner in May.

"I don't own the minerals, governments only sell you the right to mine the resource. A resource we hold in trust for a sovereign people. They own it and they deserve their share."

One mining executive told the Australian Financial Review the mining executives were "dumbstruck" by Ms Gillard's comments.

"She told us this is Australia and it has a Labor government, that it is a party of redistribution, so suck it up," the executive said.

There is also concern that Australia is exporting Labor's redistribution ideology on natural resources to other countries.

A common response by the mining industry to the introduction of the Mineral Resources Rent Tax (MRRT) was that companies would leave Australia to invest in other countries especially in Africa, like Ghana, Guinea, South Africa and Liberia.

But now Africa is taking lessons from Australia in what is called "mining governance".
Exporting change

Mining governance is all about transparent mining regulations, contract reviews and mineral taxation policies.

In 2011, South Africa's African National Congress party sent a delegation to Australia to study the Mineral Resources Rent Tax.

And last April the Prime Minister's newly-appointed special envoy to Africa, Joanna Hewitt, visited Liberia.

Ms Hewitt signed an agreement with the Liberian government to set up a natural resource taxation unit.

Australia gave $700,000 to provide advice to Liberian finance officials on mineral taxation.

Her visit to Monrovia received no media attention in Australia, but Liberian officials appreciated Australia's support.

Deputy minister of finance James Kollie told Liberia's Daily Observer that with Australian assistance "revenue officials will be adequately armed to approach natural resource companies".

At the African Union Summit in Addis Ababa last month, the Australian Government was singled out for praise for helping African countries improve their mining regulations.

There is a definite trade interest for the Australian Government advising resource-rich African countries, and there are more than 200 Australian mining companies on the continent with over $50 billion of investment.

According to Canadian resources expert Professor Bonnie Campbell, "the Australian Government is very active and very positive" in reforming African mining regulations.

Professor Campbell, whose area of expertise is the bauxite and aluminium industry of Guinea, is concerned some mining companies are resisting and lobbying against new mining regulations in African countries.

These companies interpret the mining reforms as resource nationalism or even nationalisation.

Tara O'Connor, the director of Africa Risk Consulting, a London-based firm which advises mining companies on political risk, predicts a surge in resource nationalism.

"I think the resurgence of democracy on the continent is going to increase, not decrease, the pressure for greater ownership," Ms O'Connor told Radio National’s Background Briefing.

She said she believes the problems of the past - corruption, even nationalisation - do still exist for mining companies, especially in Africa, but that resource nationalism is tied to democratisation.

"Greater democracy means that people will have greater clout and a greater voice and that is probably something for the first time in 30 years mining companies that have operated with near impunity across the continent will have to take into account," Ms O'Connor said. "

The last paragraph lays out how an ex-colony may be providing the greatest service to other ex-colonies that can possibly be.

A service of example, practical assistance and nationbuilding democracy-shaping, that Abbott and his Coalition cronies would run a mile from at even the first hint of conceiving it.


August 4. 2012 03:11 PM



What a great news story and who thinks it is about time....I know I do. This has to happen if we truly want the third world countries to improve their standard of living. They have to start to stand up for their fair share and start taxing these big corporations for the right to mine.

Expect Murdoch and Palmer et. al to start to stick it in even more to Julia and Labor if this takes off.

Ad astra I know you do a great job but how can we stop the MSM from having their way? I want to do something. I want to help change Labor's fortunes.


August 4. 2012 03:23 PM

Ad astra

Maybe a better strategy to combat ABC bias is to pinpoint specific instances to expose bias, rudeness, inaccuracy and irrelevance, rather than attempting a generic attack on the whole ABC structure and culture.  One can draw out the general from the particular.  If the ABC is attacked as an organization, many will come out in defence.  If individuals are attacked for specific journalistic inadequacies and misdemeanors, and this is done by sticking to the facts and logically reasoning a case, defence is much more problematic for the ABC.  For example, I posted a comment about Sabra Lane’s interview of Wayne Swan at 4.37 pm on August 3, to expose her arrogance and rudeness towards the Acting Prime Minister of our nation.  

Maybe Labor has decided to target the specific, such as when Julia said “Don’t write crap’, and when Craig Emerson recently pulled up some journalists for their rudeness and inaccurate statements.

Ad astra

August 4. 2012 03:24 PM

Ad astra

Hi Lyn
Your Twitterverse was interesting as always.  

I thought the Latham story about Bolt was a puff piece.  There was not one word of criticism.  The prawns and lobster ravioli must have been outstanding.

If David Farley were a real man, he would have apologized to our PM about the ‘unproductive old cow’ jibe.  Clearly he is not.  Perhaps he’s just an old bull.

I thought Laurie Oakes’ piece about Wayne Swan and his love of Bruce Springsteen’s music was good.  

Despite her headline, Michelle Grattan simply wrote a puff piece about Tony Abbott.  Not one word of disapproval came from her pen.  Can you imagine her writing something as benign about Julia Gillard?

As usual, Ross Gittins was very sound.  If only we could clone him.

The grass has dried, so I’m off to do some mowing.

Ad astra

August 4. 2012 03:29 PM

Ad astra

An interesting story.  I liked the paragraph: “ One mining executive told the Australian Financial Review the mining executives were "dumbstruck" by Ms Gillard's comments.

"  She told us this is Australia and it has a Labor government, that it is a party of redistribution, so suck it up," the executive said.”

These rentseekers do indeed need to suck it up instead of trying to sucker the Government into giving them what they demand.

Ad astra

August 4. 2012 03:47 PM


Thanks for the links Lyn. Not sure they were good for the blood pressure. Grattan is an idiot, apparently she sees nothig but talent on TAbbotts front bench?

It seems bizarre that an abundance of talent could be a problem for a leader

And oh pleeeeeasse not Barnaby as deputy. Truss is my local member I will beg him not to retire if it means keeping Joyce out of the House of Reps!

The bile on Laurie Oakes site makes me want to 'punch' someone (and I am not a violent person). I wrote something but I doubt it will get printed - why do I bother? The Punch is full of right wing cretins! And they are making sure that Oakes doesn't write something half way decent about Swann again, all he gets is whingers and right wing twerps responding. If I were a journo and all I got was that kind of response - honestly you would have to despair. He is, one would think, an intelligent man, but to attract those sort of comments every time you write something - well it makes me wonder.

Ad astra - at least you are appreciated. It has to make you feel good. Something Oakes can't be feeling unless he is as right wing and nasty....perhaps he is?


August 4. 2012 03:51 PM

42 long

It's only DIRT before we dig it up. Quote'' that's the respect they show for the planet and the people of each country from where they Pillage the resources, who rarely get anything ( Nigeria etc)
  Mining Companies... They don't create, grow or manufacture. They are an Extractive Industry and they do it once only and often (mostly) leave one big mess, afterwards. Dust, topographical nightmare, groundwater polluted, heavy metal residues etc. Of Course we need them but the consumers of the world need to pay a proper price for the "TOYS" they crave, and that is from MINE to Disposal ( recycle).

42 long

August 4. 2012 04:00 PM



Thank you for that post.  It sounds like the miners don't like it up 'em. I was giggling at their response.  Well done our Labor party, not only helping the less well off here in Aussie, but also for people in Africa.

Talk Turkey

You do write some excellent pieces, sorry to hear you now have a bladder infection, I have everything crossed for your recovery.


I have gone to the punch and learned only to read the article, not the comments.  They are and always will be revolting.


Thanks for all the extra links.  Just watched a movie on Gem and it was great, then come back here and find more lovely links.  Feeling a bit lost at the moment as we are usually at the footy, our littlies didn't make it so have to wait till next year.


August 4. 2012 04:02 PM


I am so proud of this blog, Ad astra's articles and LynLinking in particular, I have started to proselytize TPS on Twitter. I note with great satisfaction that several other people have retweeted their support for your articles too Ad. And Lyn is everywhere already.

We must find ways of using the 5th Estate to circumvent and usurp the MSM, and in particular we must orgamise to bring the ABC to account. Twitter and TPS are vital.

Set the jaw, double the fist and summon up the blood, Comrades,
this is a very real and earnest fight, DETERMINATION is the magic ingredient. All Truth is with us.  


August 4. 2012 04:11 PM



Australia ahead of the pack (again).  Lets see Medibank (the original one), CPRS, MRRT no recession for 21 years, NDIS.

Don't see where you're coming from Laughing

This is Australia - suck it up.  Brilliant.


August 4. 2012 04:15 PM



Good article – I think, as you so clearly demonstrate, there’s no doubt the MSM (including, unfortunately, our ABC) is totally opposed to the current Government. But the questions I’ve been asking myself are: why would (previously respected) journalists be so openly biased and opposed towards an elected government; and is there a single issue/policy that could unite and galvanise an entire MSM in a common purpose (to try and overthrow a government)?

Certainly I can understand the Murdoch/News Corp agenda, but why would Fairfax and even the ABC join in? For these different groups to unite there has to be an issue/policy that is perceived to be so powerful it has the capacity to threaten their existence/status quo – otherwise it just doesn’t make sense.

I think the answer is the NBN, one of this Government’s major infrastructure reforms.

The NBN (if you look at all the technical information), is immensely superior to our existing infrastructure and will dramatically change our future communication landscape (you touched on this in your June 22 opinion regarding the Fifth Estate).

But the MSM has been so preoccupied with maintaining the status quo and preserving the old business models, it failed to adapt to the digital world - the recent restructures within both News Corp and Fairfax is an acknowledgement of this failure.

So not only are current media business models outdated, I suspect everyone within the MSM world (reporters/journalists/etc.) is feeling insecure and threatened. And I think it’s this insecurity/fear (self-interest) that explains the current behaviour of MSM/journalists.

Instead of embracing NBN’s possibilities, MSM/journalists want to maintain the status quo for as long as possible and the best way to achieve this is to stop the NBN – something Abbott/LNP has undertaken to do if elected.

The NBN will be gone only if LNP is elected and this I think is the underlying objective of MSM’s current anti ALP/Government position.

Certainly there are probably other incidental factors at play, but this self-interest is the only explanation that makes sense to me.



August 4. 2012 04:55 PM

42 long

  The NBN was a brave move and I believe NOW that it was a good one. It didn't appear that private enterprise was going to do anything and it may well turn out to be a Snowy mountains type project.
   Capitalism is supposed to provide all the answers. The way things have been going lately I'm wondering if it is a lot of the problem. Certainly the way some practice it. We know Monopolies aren't good for us. I don't believe there is a single prescriptive  "ism" answer for any of this and little old australia has got a fairly good "mix" compared to other countries, though like so many places now the tendency is for the top few percent to have all the money.
That effect has to promote unreast eventually. It always has.
   Self interest and money, power etc are normally the factors.
   The workers in the MSM industry probably go along with the "ethic" generally at play in the industry, and their ego's just have them jockying for a place in the pecking order. They are an incestuous lot in the way they relate, especially the ones who specialise in politics. Some just aren't quality. Ethical is a word not in their operating manual generally.

42 long

August 4. 2012 04:59 PM


Take your point gravel - but they got me so mad. Mad as hell (some good stuff on ABC)

PeterP take your point re the NBN. But mainly I think Murdoch wants in whoever he thinks will do his biding, and at the moment its right wing all the way.....he probably breaks out in spots when he hears things like 'spread the wealth'. And Palmer, Rhinehart and Forrest positively head for their bankroles to step on board.


August 4. 2012 05:17 PM

Ad astra

Yes, I do feel appreciated.  Although we have a few come here to poke at us, there is none of the extreme vitriolic bile that one reads on the MSM blogs, where it seems there is an army of right wing radicals waiting to pounce, who will demean any journalist who says anything positive about the PM, the Government and its ministers, and go in boots and all to attack the substance of any article that does so.  

It is an echo of what is happening in the US, particularly with the Tea Party.  Astroturfing is rife, giving the impression of a grassroots reaction/revolt/campaign whereas it comes from well-organized political or corporate entities that fund the astroturfing.  There seems to be a similar movement in this country that swings into action whenever the Government seems to be making progress or reaping praise.  It is pernicious and very nasty.  The general public know little of it – they believe it is the grassroots speaking, when it is just vested interests.

Ad astra

August 4. 2012 05:33 PM

Ad astra

Thank you for the compliment.

You raise an interesting theory.  Perhaps you are right.  There may be a fear among media proprietors that superfast broadband will make their offerings relatively less attractive as NBN users explore the enormous variety of offerings on the Internet and download material in minutes rather than hours.  With rapid access to news services and overseas publications, downloadable books and documents, each citizen has a virtual worldwide library at his or her fingertips.  That is a powerful resource.

I suspect too that journalists are increasingly afraid to not toe the party line.  This we know is true of News Limited staff.  I suspect that, with the turmoil that is affecting Fairfax with its sackings of journalists, all are feeling insecure, as there is such limited scope for employment for them.  With 70% of metro newspapers in Murdoch’s grasp and about another 20% with Fairfax, where do journos get a job?  If Fairfax sacks them, News Limited is where most would head.  As they all know News Limited is on a determined mission to push Labor out and the Coalition in, any journalist who does not support that line will be in danger of not being acceptable to News Limited.  And as almost all are convinced beyond doubt that the Coalition will be elected in 2013, they are guarding their backsides by not writing anti-Coalition material.  That’s my theory anyway.

Ad astra

August 4. 2012 06:26 PM


AA..Your advice to Steve is some I would normally agree with if...and that's the operative word..;"IF"...if one was arguing into a rational, reasonable council. I remember an article posted on the Drum by Jonathan Green pondering on why there was so much vitriol directed toward the govt'....My reply was to the effect that he ought to look to his own backyard..ie. the Media itself!
This is where the "If" comes in...For some reason, there seems to be a cross-infected virus that has contaged the cabal of Aussie MSM. journos' to the effect they no longer see any enemy other than the govt' itself! And that..is the only target...News Limited sets the pace and like the mob, when it sets itself upon a victim, it cannot be distracted from the kill till it is well and truly torn to pieces!
Witness the Qld. elections. We in the other states were pretty much dumbfounded why Bligh, after all that effort and assistance in the natural disasters (of which, surely her govt' couldn't be wholly blamed) was so soundly voted out and such an obvious bast*rd put in her place!
There seems to be a sort of equation where people see a point of deminishing return on emotional or intellectual investment and rather than step back and examine why their own demands are unrealistic,look for a scapegoat to hang the blame on. These are the lower capacity achievers that now populate the ABC. commentry. They are collectively to be abused at leisure..they deserve no better!


August 4. 2012 06:33 PM


Secondly, AA., while I wholeheartedly agree with your assesment of the fear factor within the journalist community...I say ; we have all, at some point in our working lives had to make that ethical or moral decision wether we will stay or go in a given employment situation. To sell your personal integrity and soul to remain in comfortable employment has to be the height of immorality...and has to be seen as a despicable and cowardly act!


August 4. 2012 07:05 PM


Murdoch is already moving on to his preferred pm in the uk. Murdoch has been tweeting that cameron has been disappointing, however murdoch is most impressed with boris. In fact boris was guest of honour at a murdoch party.


August 4. 2012 07:35 PM

Sir Ian Crisp

I see that another ALP MP – and someone being groomed as a future PM – has complained about food. First we had Beef Stroganoffgate when the member for Lowe alerted federal parliament about a matter of national importance. John Murphy used federal parliament to raise the very serious issue of portion sizes when his voracious wife didn’t get the super-size serving of beef stroganoff in the parliament cafeteria. Just recently we were treated to the foul-mouthed Bill ‘the pieman’ Shortman abusing a humble shop owner for not having a pie ready to go. He used the ‘F’ word and I don’t mean food.

Shortman is unfit to be a future PM.

Sir Ian Crisp

August 4. 2012 07:46 PM


Hi Ad,
your statement:
'News outlets have become a powerful means of persuasion, of bending consumers to the will and the beliefs of the authors.' Could be modified to say 'News outlets have always been a powerful means of persuasion, ...' and it would then better reflect what has always been so.

There is an apparently old adage “Never pick a fight with a man who buys ink by the barrel and paper by the ton” variously (mis)attributed to Samuel Johnson, Mark Twain and Benjamin Franklin among others.

The primt media has always been more than just purveyors of the cold hard facts of news and there have been campaigning proprietors and journalists since shortly after the printing press was invented.

We have had our share in this country of 'campaigning' jourmalists Alan Reid, Wilfred Burchett and John Pilger come readily to mind.

Reid, often wrongly attributed with coining the phrase The 36 faceless men was a card carrying member of the Labor Party who exposed much of the shennaigans behind the Petrov Affair and bought to light the influence of B A Santamatia among other stories around the Labor Split.

We don't have to too far back to find 'campaigning proprietors' such as Sir Frank Packer and different ways his son Kerry.

We could look back fondly on an era (that) was one where reporters ferreted out the facts from wherever they were hidden, verified them by cross-checking against other sources, and promulgated them in unalloyed form untainted by the reporter’s opinion, ... but we would be mistaken to conclude that the 'news' that was presented was free of the journalists (or a proprieters) opinion.

It was only forty years ago that the press was actively part of a campaign to bring to an end an inept and stumbling government and decicided it was time for a change. Interestingly two years later the press again wanted change and didn't succeed in convincing the electorate but were very successful over the next eighteen months in highlighting every stumble and 'failure' of the government so much so the that they played a major part in the overthrow of the government on that 'fateful' Rememberance Day.

The major difference between today and forty years ago is that any fool with access to an internet connection can can instantly publish their opinion (which is always absolutely correct) and point out how the media is totally biased and against everything that that particular author knows to be absolutely beyond doubt.

Taking a few steps back from all the arguments about the media being for or against any particular side of politics and looking at the problems that this government has it goes back to Kevin Rudd's obsession with attempting to control and win the 24 hour media cycle instead of actually arguing the case for particular policies and the current administration is still attempting to win in daily media cycle.

Labor's standing would be much better served by arguing a solid case for why its' policies are better for the nation than playing at attempting to win the media cycle.

News Ltd is not Labor's biggest enemy it is moor likely that the current government is its' own worst enemy.


August 4. 2012 08:27 PM


Sir Ian,
       Being a "chef" by trade if I walk into a food outlet only to be told I can warm a pie in a microwave I'd swear as well!
I keep getting told the customer is always right!
Seems to me it's nothing more than another look over here as we have nothing else to talk about in the media.
Bob Hawke was a womaniser and a drunk before coming PM did the public care at the time?


August 4. 2012 08:35 PM


Sir Ian Crisp has spoken..he has been thinking long and hard on the subject (he hasn't much else to think about) and has come to his brilliant conclusion....it is no wonder he was knighted.
Arise; Sir Crisp....whore don of the sink pots.


August 4. 2012 09:39 PM

Wake Up

"News Ltd is not Labor's biggest enemy it is moor[sic] likely that the current government is its' own worst enemy."

What rubbish DMW, to make an observation like that you would have to be either an LNP troll, deaf and blind, or living under a rock.

"The major difference between today and forty years ago is that any fool with access to an internet connection can can[sic] instantly publish their opinion."

Aint that the truth !!!

Wake Up

August 4. 2012 10:01 PM

Acerbic Conehead


Thank you for another insightful analysis of the role of the media.  

As everyone knows by now, cattle boss, David “Charolais” Farley, expressed his view that the Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, should go the way of his old cattle in one of his abattoirs.


However, Charolais  has just got back from a muster and announced he will be standing, at the next election, for the seat of Lalor, ready to usurp the place of the Old Cow herself.

Here he is, in the middle of the rock n’ roll media, in the recording studio, with his band (Charolais Farley and the Cutthroats) composed of his fellow Gillard-haters, Grahame Morris, Alan Jones, Tony Abbott and Michelle Grattan.  They are laying down a demo recording for their campaign to finally rid Lalor of the Silly Old Moo.  As far as they are concerned, it is only a question of time before Gillard is nothing more than a piece of dead meat lying on the slab in his Lalor Abattoir (L.A.).


:- (
Well, I just got into town about an hour ago
Took a look around, with my good buddy Tones
For the heifer holed up in her Melbourne bungalow
At the election, aim to be Lalor’s leading light
In my Lalor Abattoir, she can say good night
Say goodnight, Say goodnight, Say goodnight, woo, c'mon
:- (
L.A. Woman, L.A. Woman
L.A. Woman minced this afternoon
L.A. Woman minced this afternoon
L.A. Woman minced this afternoon
Butchered in Lalor’s suburbs
Slaughterhouse blues, Slaughterhouse blues, yeah
Slaughterhouse blue-blue blues
Slaughterhouse blues, ohh, yeah
:- (
I’ll see your hair is burnin'
Charnel house filled with fire
If you say you ever loved ‘em
I’ll tell ‘em you’re Ju-liar
:- (
Stick you in a chaff bag
Dump you out at sea
Kick to death, lie down and die
Time for this cow to fall
On her sword, On her sword
On her sword, On her sword
:- (
MRRT n’ Fair Work madness
Let's change this seat from sad to gladness
:- (
My mojo’s risin', my mojo’s risin'
My mojo’s risin', my mojo’s risin'
Got to keep on risin'
My mojo’s risin', Mr. Mojo risin'
Mojo’s risin', gotta mojo risin'
My mojo’s risin', gotta keep on risin'
Risin', risin'
Gone risin', risin'
I'm gone risin', risin'
I gotta risin', risin'
Well, risin', risin'
I gotta, wooo, yeah, risin'
Woah, ohh yeah
:- (
Well, I just got into town about an hour ago
Took a look around, with my good buddy Tones
For the heifer holed up in her Melbourne bungalow
:- (
At the election, aim to be Lalor’s leading light
In my Lalor Abattoir, she can say good night
Say goodnight, Say goodnight, Say goodnight, woo, c'mon
:- (
L.A. Woman, L.A. Woman
L.A. Woman, you’re so stubborn
Little L.A. Woman, Little L.A. Woman
L.A. L.A. Woman Woman
L.A. Woman c'mon
Time to die!

Acerbic Conehead

August 4. 2012 10:04 PM

Wake Up

Sir Ian Crisp seems to have his crisps a little crinkled.

It is not known whether Bill shouted abuse as you claim, so that would be postulation on your part or the repeat of postulation on behalf of the media.

What is known however is that Bill exercised his right as a consumer and promptly went to the shop next door to purchase the hot pie which he so desired.

What a shame the poor souls in Queensland aren't able to 'go next door' if they don't like what's on offer in The Courier Mail !!!

Wake Up

August 4. 2012 10:40 PM


Thanks Wake Up,
I will take it as a badge of honour that because I have a different perspective to yours that I am obviously either an LNP troll, deaf and blind, or living under a rock.

Your response is a graphic example of why political discourse has plumbed the depths that it has in that rather than debate the merits or otherwise of the argument you resort to name calling.

As your handle says Wake Up to yourself and engage in debate.


August 4. 2012 11:20 PM

Truth Seeker

DMW, If you are happy with the level of reporting in this country, then "Wake up's" assessment of your political leaning and bias is a fair one to make.
When the media are bought and paid for, as they are in this country,  truth and democracy are the first casualties, and there are clear examples of blatant right wing bias across all forms of the media, on a daily basis.
It would be an interesting exercise for the government to announce that they were going to introduce the Canadian model for truth in media legislation, and then sit back and watch the outrage and the spurious arguments put forward as to why they (The MSM) should not have to tell the truth.
And BTW there is NO badge of honour, in being aligned with the lies and deceptions of the LNP, as there is no honour in the way they conduct themselves.

Truth Seeker

August 4. 2012 11:32 PM



I really can't work out where you're coming from re the media.

Just one example from a couple of days back tells it all. Abbott and Brough have both firmly stated that Brough has been completely up front re Ashby matter.

This is 100% a blatant lie. Yet at the pressers when this was claimed, not one question about this lie. Nor was there any article or reference to it by tv or print media.

Surely you do not believe the media treats the government so benignly?

The fact is that every flaw of the govt,  major, minor, and made up ones, are done to death. And even the most blatant major errors of the opposition are overlooked. Day after day after day.

It has been so for 2,years non stop.

Sure, the government complaining about this as their only strategy would be silly, but they don't and won't.

They have so many good policies, done and dusted and on the way that they do not need to do so.

Whereas the Abbotteers have no policies and only "this is a very bad government" to use as their strategy plus 2 or 3 related and juvenile slogans.


August 4. 2012 11:47 PM


Come in Spinner,
Truth Seeker, Psyclaw where did I state that I was happy with the state of the media?

It is nothing new for the media to 'campaign' against or for a government.


August 5. 2012 12:13 AM

42 long

So does that make it right , acceptable or justified?  Who elects Murdoch? Why would they assume they have the right to manipulate us. Why would it be  a reasonable situation when the consequences are so real? Just because Rupert has spent his life getting power and influence over governments who are working for the people( and not him) why does that become OUR problem? We know what is happening and we don't agree with it.

42 long

August 5. 2012 06:44 AM


Labor's most pressing problems are its Communist Ideology policies of restricting free speech, spending (wasting) borrowed money like there is no tomorrow and overbearing "we know best" attitude to the voters at large.


August 5. 2012 07:18 AM

Truth Seeker

Ex Thinker- it is not Labor that are restricting free speech, it is the media which has really ramped it up since the announcement of the NBN, as it threatens their business model.
And incase you have not noticed, it is the LNP who ignore all the experts on climate change, asylum  seekers, economics etc, telling everyone that they are the purveyors of all wisdom, knowledge and good policy, LOL.

BTW that "Wasted" money that you trolls rave on about, saved many jobs and insulated us from that little inconvenience, the GFC and was applauded by economic experts around the world.

It's sad that people like you choose to be deaf, blind and stupid, but then ignoring everyone but yourselves is normal for trolls.

Truth Seeker

August 5. 2012 08:11 AM


One has to marvel at the right-wing thinking process. I mean..really, they couldn't put LESS thinking into a post!....The absolute MINIMUM thought process that a human being could muster...a Babboob, I am certain could be trained to pick up and place slips of paper with such mantras printed on them!
Amazing...one has to giggle!...bloody amazing!!


August 5. 2012 08:28 AM


Acerbic Conehead

Welcome back.  You are so good at putting things into perspective. Glad to see you are still hanging in here with us even though we don't see you often.

Okay people, in QLD they are stopping breast cancer funding, bowel detection funding and cervical cancer funding.  Nothing on ABC, or Ch7 so far.  Why?  If it had been a Labor state, what would have been the reaction.  Thanks to twitter, I am informed what is happening in Australia, not the MSM.

Oh, and any commentor that says ex-labor gives themselves away first up, this troll must be new to the internet.


August 5. 2012 08:41 AM


But seriously, folks.:Judging by the simple-mindedness of right-wing policies and their shrill supporters, we have to come to grips with the very real possibility that the next election will be contested not on economic or philosophic grounds..but rather on the age old civilising subjects of ; left-wing rationalist dialogue and right-wing unintellectualism!....ie..thinking vs. stupidity!
And friends..at the moment, as we witnessed in Qld...stupidity seems to be winning!


August 5. 2012 08:59 AM


So the government isn't its' own worst enemy when it comes to handling its' message. It is the media that distorts the message and reframes the message to make the government look bad.

Why do the Treasurer and the Prime Minister keep telling us 'We know you are doing it tough and there people out there suffering and we feel your pain'. Is it to reinforce the message that Labor are no good at handling the economy and that the economy is going down the gurgler? Of course not it is the media 'twisting' the message.

The Treasurer tells us he is inspired by an aging rock muso. I wonder if he is inspired by (or has read) any economists such as Smith, Krugman or Quiggin? Surely it would inspire more confidence that the nations chief economic guide had been inspired by more than an aging rocker.

I guess the majority here, being the majority, are right that the government isn't its' own worst enemy and that the media is a major cause of its' woes.


August 5. 2012 09:48 AM

Sir Ian Crisp

C'mon JGuy, people don't behave like that when life's frustrations come along. I went into West End Mazda at Blacktown on Friday and made my way to the reception desk. The lady asked me if I was interested in viewing a new car. I said no and asked her to point me in the direction of the spare parts department. She told me that West End Mazda Blacktown did not have a spare parts department (can you believe that?). She said West End Parramatta carried spare parts. I asked her if she was joking and she just repeated what she had already told me. I didn't swear or abuse her. I did roll my eyes and I asked her if that was West End Mazda Blacktown's version of customer service. She didn't reply.

Do you think I should have pumped out a heap of expletives and abuse? Would that solve the problem?

Sir Ian Crisp

August 5. 2012 09:55 AM


"...a heap of expletives..." No sir...I feel from your post that you felt quite, quite vainly superior as it was!


August 5. 2012 09:59 AM

Sir Ian Crisp

Sir Ian Crisp seems to have his crisps a little crinkled.

It is not known whether Bill shouted abuse as you claim, so that would be postulation on your part or the repeat of postulation on behalf of the media.

What is known however is that Bill exercised his right as a consumer and promptly went to the shop next door to purchase the hot pie which he so desired.

What a shame the poor souls in Queensland aren't able to 'go next door' if they don't like what's on offer in The Courier Mail !!!

Wake Up

Great point Wake Up. We are free to postulate and that makes my postulation as valid as any other. Don't forget it was Bill who agreed with the PM even though he didn't know what she said. Bill's problem is that all living tissue above his shoulders is dead so he is likely to say anything.

Sir Ian Crisp

August 5. 2012 10:19 AM


The reporting of Shorton and the pie demonstrates a number points.

Firstly the lack of depth of reporting in this country where such a trivial issue is given "front page" news.

Secondly the dumbing down of the population where the shallowness of this reporting is not shouted from the rooftops

Thirdly that "resident" conservative trolls on blogs use this pissweak reporting to try and bash people over the head with it - and get away with it.

On topic - while the media certainly haven't helped the ALP since early 2008, the ALP is certainly not blame free.  How many "powerful ALP figures" (to borrow a figure of speech) have been reported as stating Rudd/Gillard's leadership is on rocky ground until [a certain even] happens?  How many ALP leaders have made stupid comments on internal policy/practice in a similar timeframe?  How many times have selection fights etc been played out in public?  Just before the last Queensland election the Secretary of the Public Service Union (although not ALP affiliated) publicly announces Bligh is a problem, but he can work with Newman and has no fear of him becoming Premier (despite what Newman did to the Brisbane CIty Council while Lord Mayor).

Unlike DMW above, I don't believe the majority is right because they say so.  For generations Brisvegas kids have been asked if they would jump off the Storey Bridge if all their friends do - the obvious answer being no.  

The media report what they are given and after some editorial process is undertaken.  Regardless of the avenue used - a press conference or a coffee between two consenting adults - everything is recorded and analysed.  If political operative and reporter meet at Dickson in Canberra or North Ward in Townsville - any information given to the reporter will at the end of the day be used.  The ALP lacks discipline in comparison to the LNP as demonstrated in the paragraph above this one.  It is rare to hear about LNP selection battles or internal decision processes.  Until the media and general public work out that public awareness of people considering their options is a better strategy than selling a message - hence making reporting on possible leadership coups etc passé, the ALP needs to show better discipline that the LNP regularly demonstrates to get it's message out.  

And please stop mixing the messages - Australia is doing well financially or it isn't.  If it is doing well, the policy settings by the current Government are to be credited for doing so.  Instead of "feeling your pain", express sorrow that the LNP's trickle down effect hasn't worked (as the Republican/Tea Party version hasn't either) and the ALP is now fixing it with the CPRS and MRRT.  Compare a low paid worker in the US or Spain to an Australian one, compare almost any leading or trailing economic indicator going and we are doing well.  Get a message, show some discipline and stick to it.  Like it or not "NO" is a message and most here have acknowledged how well it has worked when done repetitively and with discipline.

Cue those that disagree and instrad of debating the argument debate the person . . .


August 5. 2012 10:32 AM


suitably chided Tong I accept what you say that it is not the case that the majority is right because it says so.

Thanks for your thoughts on mixed messages which I will let percolate as I wend the traps today.


August 5. 2012 10:34 AM


by the way 2353 I am about to drop into Dickson I will see if I can spot any journo/pollie onfabs Smile


August 5. 2012 10:48 AM


You were correct, Gavel...I heard discussion this morning about Qld. cutting breast cancer services and others.
I ask you ; who is this cretttin they have for premier? Is he for real? What sort of neanderthal moron does such things to the people?
Sinodinos let the cat out of the bag with his comment on "workplace relations" yesyterday...indeed, we are heading toward a battle between the light of civilisation and the LNP. darkness of barbarity!


August 5. 2012 10:54 AM


G'Day AA a good article is like a ripe fruit tree, when you shake it well enough all the nuts will fall out, a good tree well shaken, nuts laying everywhere.


August 5. 2012 11:04 AM


Sir Ian,
       WHAT? I once worked in a restaurant where we charged $95.00 for a 400 gram porterhouse steak,If it wasn't cooked to the customers exact liking, do you think they just sat back and said nothing?


August 5. 2012 11:27 AM


DMW - try Toscanini's!  The coffee is good, even if there are no pollies to spot.  There also the cluttered looking one I forget the name of around the back near Harris Scarfe (I think) - had a great breakfast there once.  I actually like Dickson, there is a great variety of food outlets, some nice coffee shops and a good vibe (especially at night).  Members of my family live in North Canberra and while I'd like to say I get to see them frequently, sadly it's not the case.

And of course the majority is not right - look at Newman.


August 5. 2012 11:40 AM


Good Morning Ad & Everybody

Wayne Swan using Bruce Springstein in his address used a brilliant  carefully thought out strategy for achieving MSM coverage. The MSM have always reported Wayne Swan is boring he can’t deliver speeches. Same applies to Craig Emerson his Whyalla song was fantastic ,Craig has become an Icon for ABC they play the clip over and over brilliant PR .

Everybody knows the MSM have an agenda to remove the Government & everybody knows why.  We only have to look at the NBN distorted reporting. Rupert is using his power for his own vested interests. Pretty easy to see they don’t even try to hide their pathetic bias.

Ad Astra how many times have we proved on TPS, the incredible distorted reporting of the MSM.  How many articles, how many comments, how many links to blogs, remember all the newpapers headlines I posted last year  berating Julia Gillard, Stephen Smith, Wayne Swan  they went on like Lunatics & still are the latest proof is “Piegate”.

Campbell Newman is still driving a bulldozer through Queensland, Gravel & Jaycee you are correct, he sure has cut the cancer clinics, I am told at 10pm last night.

Wonderful to see Acerbic Conehead this morning.  Wow look how lucky we are,  we have Patricia, Talk Turkey, & Truth Seeker, 4 talented word-smiths fantastic.

Best wishes to you Talk Turkey, we are very sorry to hear of your pain & incredible discomfort.


Bushfire Bill
Posted Sunday, August 5
In the Laboratory Of Life that Queensland has become, it should be remembered that part of the process of destroying the Bligh and Gillard governments in Queenslanders’ minds was the destruction of governance itself

Marian Rumens‏ by Phillip Coorey
Abbott plans cuts in health, defence and education jobs www.smh.com.au/.../...ion-jobs-20120309-1upqn.html via @smh #qld #qldpol

A COALITION government would take the axe to public service jobs in health, defence and education as part of a promise by Tony Abbott to undertake a thorough audit of federal government spending

Shock as LNP government winds up iconic statewide cancer service BreastScreen
BREASTSCREEN Queensland - the iconic statewide cancer service credited with saving thousands of lives - will be dismantled by the Newman Government.
The plan to break up the service, as well as bowel and cervical cancer programs, has shocked the Queensland Cancer Council, which now fears lives will be put at risk.

I'm puzzled theqldpremier You're scrapping #BreastScreen to save $44m but giving $110m to bloody horse racing www.goldcoast.com.au/.../...1_gold-coast-news.html #Explain

Prof Kerryn Phelps‏
Will Queensland women die wondering of they could have detected early#cancer? m.couriermail.com.au/.../shock-as-lnp-government-winds-up-iconic-statewide-cancer-service-

Queensland Premier Campbell Newman has come out swinging against union leaders, calling them wealthy Labor operatives who are organising strikes that will hurt workers' hip pockets

Queensland Online‏
Tropic: Unions keep up fight against Queensland job cuts http://bit.ly/QruMgW #qld

Funding cut to all free tenant advisory services – your help needed!

vexnews‏ by Samatha Maiden
Don't you love it when the pampered poodles of the Press Gallery say politicians have lost the "common touch"? #auspol http://bit.ly/OzTSXI

Changing face of a suburb
China is now our second largest source of immigrants, behind New Zealand. Last financial year more than 14,600 Chinese settlers arrived on our shores, many of them opting to live in Sydney communities including Hurstville, Burwood, Eastwood, Epping and Chatswood that are are already dominated by their countrymen.

(B1) Abbott is damaging international relations just as Hanson did, through his xenophobia and thinly-veiled... http://fb.me/tnYHJeRw


Dear Viewer, once again I need to apologize unreservedly 4 #insiders merely re-echoing LNP talking points, +no `value-add`. Sorry. #abcrage

Kabuki Geek‏
Truss says workers now have too much power and earn too much money. Need balance back to sensible centre. #insiders

I/v with Truss on Insiders reveals conservative politics in this country hasn't moved far from the 19th century brawls over protectionism.

Agnes Mack‏
#insiders Lenore: Swan's Boss speech hit exactly the spot he wanted. It wasn't aimed at us ( journos)

Fair point @lenoretaylor, Swan trying to win over non-engaged voters, not the political junkies. Get ready #insiders PieGate questions

Mr Jatan‏
Damn right Dennis - keep it up Campbell you're painting brilliant pic for rest of Oz to see how LNP handle power #Insiders

Agnes Mack ‏
#insiders DEnnis: Qld Govt taking away some workers' rights. Didn't tell before election. Could feed into fed election - will Abbott do same

  Agnes Mack ‏
#insiders Dennis : Abbott racist in China on state-owned investments. Has dropped since, must have got message Chinese unhappy.

Latika Bourke ‏
Deputy PM Wayne Swan - Tony Abbott's musical inspiration is 'Hey Jude' 'nah, nah, nah, nah, nah.'

$100m to tell Liberals how to run NSW
"While Barry O'Farrell is sacking 15,000 workers from our schools, hospitals and emergency services, he is handing over more than $100 million to expensive consultants," Mr Robertson said.

"The O'Farrell government could pay for more than 1000 extra nurses or teachers with the money it is spending on external consultants."

Z☰N Digital ‏
Tony Abbott will do exactly the same to Australian services as Newman is doing to QLD #qldpol #auspol It is in #LibDNA http://bit.ly/OyGnue

Legal advice sought on turning back the boats | The Australian http://bit.ly/NtnUdO

Closing down, by Min, Return to Blogocracy  
Dear friends, due to unforeseen circumstances some not so good, and some very good indeed I would like to advise that Road to Blogocracy is closing down. Mind you, the very good far outweighs the not so good, however in the coming months there are going to be some big changes which are going to be taking up a considerable amount of time


August 5. 2012 11:52 AM


Thanks, Lyn...great links...Can't believe the cancer cuts!...barbaric! Those journos' on insiders...what a bunch of "wendy's soft-serve".


August 5. 2012 12:10 PM



Labor's standing would be much better served by arguing a solid case for why its' policies are better for the nation than playing at attempting to win the media cycle.

News Ltd is not Labor's biggest enemy it is moor likely that the current government is its' own worst enemy.

Well what on earth do these last two paragraphs of yours mean?

It seems that once again you are straddling the fence.

And this from your keyboard too:

So the government isn't its' own worst enemy when it comes to handling its' message. It is the media that distorts the message and reframes the message to make the government look bad.

Just where you stand is quite obscure, always one step forward and two steps back. Your dance could actually be called The Fence Straddlers Waltz quite aptly.

And as for your:

It is nothing new for the media to 'campaign' against or for a government

You miss the point totally. All of us know that the media campaigns for or agin the government of the day, and has done so since time immemorial.

This is quite different to the media attempting maliciously to destroy the government from the date of the election till the following election. It is a matter of degree and intent.

Perhaps you need an analogy or two but I suspect I'm wasting my time. How about one simple example. Jogging  4 or 5 kilometres a day might be good for health. Jogging 100 kilometres a day ..... no way ....... we'd call this person obsessive (athletes excepted of course).


August 5. 2012 12:27 PM

Ad astra

Hi Lyn
I’m just now catching up with the overnight comments, and attracted like a moth to light, I have first taken in your always-interesting Twitterverse.  Thank you for feeding us so sumptuously, even at the weekend.

Newman is swinging the axe hard, urged on, if he needed any urging, by Jeff Kennett, an axe-wielder in his hey-day.  Apparently Newman doesn’t mind, as he categorizes himself as bullet-proof in the manner of a popular song, the name of which I can’t recall.  According to Dennis Atkins this morning on Insiders the public is still forgiving, apparently buying Newman’s line that it’s all Labor’s fault.  The honeymoon will not last, as services and valued amenities are deleted one after the other.  By the 2013 election Newman may be a major Labor asset, demonstrating to a bewildered electorate what it would be like to suffer under an Abbott Government.  BB’s assessment was sound, as ever, that Newman is attacking democratic governance itself.

I note Sir Ian has once more graced us with a visit.  I’m sure we all applaud his civil behaviour towards the receptionist at West End Mazda Blacktown.  The standard of discourse he initiates on TPS would be elevated were he to extend the same level of civility to other bloggers here, who in turn may feel inclined to reciprocate.

Ad astra

August 5. 2012 12:39 PM

42 long

  Advertising costs a lot of money. To buy a front page spread on a largish newspaper might cost 300,000. SO
  IF a certain group of newspapers "campaign" consistently for one side or the other, how would the imbalance be corrected.
   The government in this case can never find the money and if they did would be catcalled from the rooftops.
   The LNP take the "free kicks" ( from the ABC and the many headlines from the MSM with a certain smuggness that only comes from knowing that you hold ALL the cards.
   With such a bias, that millions of dollars couldn't redress, why wouldn't MOST of the people believe the lies/ persuasion/ spin, ( whatever you want to call it).
   I repeat, If this propaganda didn't work why would millions of dollars be spent on advertising. Why did the Mining companies spend heaps? Why does GINA want chunks of Fairfax?
    Under these circumstances don't tell me that the majority of the people are in a fit state to know. They may BELIEVE things. That is why the effort is made. That's why the LNP trolls are everywhere, even trying to neutralise sites like this one.

42 long

August 5. 2012 12:47 PM

Ad astra

Welcome back to the ‘comments’ on TPS and thank you for your kind remarks.  We know you a TPS lurker, and you know you would be a very welcome return contributor of original satire any time you feel the urge and time permits.

Your reference to the ‘unproductive old cow’ jibe reminds us how vicious are her opponents, to which you draw attention in your verse with reference to some of the more lurid descriptors: Alan Jones’ ‘chaff bags at sea’, Graeme Morris’ ‘kicked to death’, Michelle Grattan’s ‘fall on her sword’, Tony Abbott’s ‘she won’t lie down and die’, when everyone knows she ought, so Tony can have his turn.

I’ve never heard of ‘The Doors’ but the ‘melody’ was stirring and well chosen.

Isn’t it a sad commentary on political discourse in this nation that such grossly disparaging comments can be made about the nation’s leader and the MSM never even murmurs, instead reporting it with the glee of a cub reporter that has come across his first scoop.

Ad astra

August 5. 2012 01:00 PM

Ad astra

I'm writing something in response to your comments, but as that will take time, I'm breaking for lunch.

Ad astra

August 5. 2012 01:04 PM

Tom of Melbourne

At risk of making DMW unpopular, he is about the most balanced and intelligent contributor on this site, yet several have dismissed his valid observations.

It’s time for many contributors to this site to note and accept the orientation of DMW (and Bill Kelty for that matter)

Tom of Melbourne

August 5. 2012 01:20 PM

42 long

I am sure that DMW can speak for himself. TfM
  Lecturing some of us on  what to accept or not accept is not your right Your quote from Kelty ( oft repeated)is not complete and  is out of context of the rest of his message, so you are selective and not dealing with facts, which is so characteristic of you. Isn't it?.  You're not here to inform, or add anything of substance , Just to make a nuisance of yourself. Do a good deed for once. find somewhere where you are wanted. " Life wasn't meant to be easy"

42 long

August 5. 2012 01:38 PM

Acerbic Conehead

Thanks, AA, Gravel and Lyn for your kind words.  I notice that TT has been in the medical wars.  Best wishes, TT, for a speedy recovery.

AA, ongoing work commitments and extended family health issues are making it impossible for me to write on a regular basis.  However, I'll continue to lurk and add something spasmodically.

Keep up the great work!

Acerbic Conehead

August 5. 2012 01:51 PM


42 long....In regards the T factor..you may find this hard to believe, but some individuals seem to only feel "loved" when they are abused!..hence the employment of "Madam lash" types to give them the "love" they feel they deserve!
If you notice with the T factor, there is always a pause of several days or even a week before he comes sloping around with one of his banal statements...it is that time factor that gives his "needs" away...that "loved" feeling wears off too soon!


August 5. 2012 01:56 PM


On the "inspirational song" issue, I could make the observation that the T factor's theme song could very well be..: Ian Dury and the Blockheads..; "Hit Me with Your Rythym Stick"....."...das is gut..das is quik..."


August 5. 2012 02:51 PM

42 long

  Thanx JC. I know I shouldn't reply, and I hate saying things that don't add to a conversation. I don't think there is any genuine intent there so I guess I'm disappointed with the negativeness, and lack of substance in the proposition.
  On another matter Swanny's song. It certainly got their attention. Hockey was clearly not amused. Achieved the desired result I would observe.. There is less substance in Hockey than I first thought. He is no better than the others.
  When you take a good look at the opposition front bench it's not a pretty sight. Not much obvious talent.
    Is it my eyes or is Leader Tony looking a bit the worse for wear, these days?
   Ructions between Katter (and the Joyce move) and the NP leader (watsisname?) . Aren't the NP and the Lieberaters the happy little vegemiters we are led to believe. They can't make up their minds whether the election is imminent or to be  at the full term. Depends on the question asked. (Insiders today)
  They must be cocksure about nothing blowing up with Brough, to run the risk with him and the Ashby connection, and all those emails.
  Apparently the act tough against Slipper is supposed to run well with the locals up there, in the electorate, so the end justifies the means is OK again. Don't worry how murky the Process is. Queenslanders like tough blokes to move and eliminate undesireables. get on with the job.
  Can Do is like that. All the terrible pain he is dishing out is caused by those rotten useless labour people. (nothing to do with floods and cyclones etc) The ensuing slowdown  of the Qld economy will be labours fault also. This Guy Knows what he is doing. You better believe it. Can you believe HIM though?
How many of his pre election promises has he broken so far?
  He ran Brisbane though. He MUST know what he is doing.

42 long

August 5. 2012 03:11 PM


Of course you should reply, 42 long...these trolls are sent to us as a gift to amuse ourselves with...and hey!..they love it!...won't admit it, but they really do!

On the Tabbott issue, yes..come to think of it, he does look a bit bedraggled lately..of course, the fact that he hasn't delivered on the downfall of the govt' like I bet he promised "behind closed doors". and the fact that he can now be seen as so lightweight politically, he has been hearing those "chinese whispers"..coming from his own ranks!
You know..so many times we hear the question : "What is truth?"...as a challenge to prove the existence of such a thing. Well, to me, Truth is that, either substance or essence, when applied to a subject will give that subject undeniable added strength. The lie is that, either substance or essence, when applied to a subject will detract from that subjects honesty and strength.
Which is why the lie never, never finally wins, while truth lingers eternal.
Abbott is doomed. The lie cannot be long maintained.


August 5. 2012 03:24 PM


jaycee and 42 long

I am really enjoying your chats, they are lively and enlightening. Thanks.Smile


August 5. 2012 03:31 PM


Even apart from the Springsteen inclusion, Mr Swan's speech was quite excellent, and dare I say it, when I read it the first thought to mind was "this is pretty good, it reads like a Watson/Keating speech" which is no  faint praise.

Speaking of faint praise, the visitor troll from the southern capital lauds your work. Bit of a worry that!


When you write a brief post including 3 Boltisms and nothing else then we all know that your pseudonym is a typical redneck lie. I regret having to say that to someone in (probably??) their first visit here, but a spade is a spade.

Please choose a more honest pseudonym. When you are proud of what you are, then what you say is at least honourable even though it may be crap.


August 5. 2012 03:38 PM


Hey!!...What's wrong with Bruce Springsteen?.....Whahoo hooo..!


August 5. 2012 04:40 PM

Ad astra

Thank you for your always thought provoking comment, to which there have been several responses.  It deserves a considered reply.

Of course you are right to remind us that ever since the printing press was invented, its products have had the potential to persuade readers to this or that viewpoint.  At the time the Church saw this potential and was fearful of it, educating as it threatened to do, a public that was largely parochial and ignorant.  Truth became a threat when it was promulgated to an audience that had been led to believe otherwise.  

What I believe we are debating here is a matter of degree.  To what degree is today’s MSM worse (or better) than it was last century, during Menzies’ and Whitlam’s days.  Even those of us old enough to have lived during those times are unable to recall the details of MSM behaviour then.  I do remember the “Pig Iron Bob’ tag that Bob Menzies wore after he fought waterside workers to sell scrap iron to Japan, and the more respectful ‘Ming’, a reference to his Highland ancestry.  And who could forget ‘Honest Johnny’, a snide reference to John Howard’s ‘core and non-core promises’.  Readers may remember others.

But was there then anything as offensive as ‘Ju-liar’, Ditch the Witch, Bob Brown’s Bitch, putting our PM in a hessian bag and dumping her out to sea, kicking her to death, urging her to fall on her sword, and the most recent ‘unproductive old cow’?  If there were, please remind us.

My first point then is that the degree of demonization, and the breadth of it from much of the media, seems far greater than in the past, which brings to mind the Goebbels dictum that if a lie is told often enough, no matter how big, the people will eventually believe it.  Maybe you can evince evidence that the current demonization is not unusual.  You mention some celebrated instances; maybe you have more.

Your conclusion that: “News Ltd is not Labor's biggest enemy; it is more likely that the current government is its own worst enemy, suggests that Labor has made so many mistakes the media has been able to seize upon to lambast it, that it is Labor’s mistakes that have been the trigger rather than ill will on behalf of the media.

All governments make mistakes.  Some are acknowledged as such by a vast body of opinion and often by the government itself.  Some ‘mistakes’ though are a matter of opinion, rather than being absolute.  Take a contemporary example.  Wayne Swan’s reference to Bruce Springsteen’s songs and his admission that they inspire him, on the one hand drew sarcastic comment from Joe Hockey, Tony Abbott and some journalists, who insisted that it demeaned the office of Treasurer; yet on the other hand drew positive comment, even congratulations, from others, for example the Insiders panel this morning, who commended him for getting attention during a difficult week when most people were focused on the London Olympics.  Who is ‘right’?  The critics call it a crude childish mistake; those who applaud, a clever move.  In which way ought the media to handle reporting of this?  I suspect that it depends entirely on the journalist’s opinion about whether Swan’s move was right or wrong.  You point out that media advocacy is as old as the hills, but ought it not be based on logical appraisal of the facts rather than ‘opinion’?

My point is that if we wish to ascribe blame to the Government for all the difficulties it is having with the media, rather than the media itself, we are assuming that every criticism by the media is based upon a real mistake, a verifiable mistake, a mistake that all agree upon.  Yet we know that this cannot be, and indeed is not the case.  For example, many economists agree that the stimulus package was a wise and courageous move that kept countless thousands in work, supported building and the retail trade, and left Australia in the very strong fiscal position it now enjoys, while others paint it as a disastrous move leading to gross waste and mismanagement.  Who is right?  The Australian and News Limited outlets believe the latter and excoriate the Government repeatedly.  So is Labor to blame for this?  Or is it simply that News Limited, for whatever reason, has found it suitable to wage war on the Government on this matter.

Those people, including journalists, who detest the Government and Julia Gillard and want them replaced, will see almost everything they do as ‘mistakes’, poor judgement, lack of leadership, and so on, and will therefore feel justified in attacking them by any means, especially through their columns and TV and radio outlets.  They exonerate themselves by asserting, as they so often do, that this Labor Government is its own worst enemy, and by corollary the media is blameless, and simply reporting the facts.   Perhaps some of the reaction to your comment has been because you seemed to be exonerating the media, even if that was not your intent.

We could debate endlessly what constitutes an agree-upon mistake, error of judgement, lack of leadership, poor anticipation, or inadequate planning, and in the end have a large pile submitted by Gillard opponents.  Yet there would be another large pile where objective evidence showed that these were not mistakes at all, but rather labelled as such on the basis of individual opinion.

I find blanket statements unconvincing, and try to avoid them, perhaps unsuccessfully at times. I find evidence-based particulars more convincing and valid.  If we use the latter approach we would likely have less disagreement, as the evidence would usually speak for itself.  But as closely held opinions are too often not amenable to reason, we get into fruitless arguments and unfortunately some personal insults.

I suppose when it all boils down, individuals are governed by what they see as fair and reasonable, by a sense of equity and social justice.  For example, it is clear from the current IR debate that the Government has a view that its Fair Work Australia legislation is appropriate but needs some tweaking after the recent review, whereas employer groups see it as bad policy that needs substantial change.  Who is right?  Is a media attack that fails to debate the details logically an example of Labor being its own worst enemy?  We could go on forever with this discourse, but extreme positions are unlikely to get us nearer to agreement.

Ad astra

August 5. 2012 05:48 PM

42 long

  A fact is a FACT and no amount of opinion can alter it. The victors may write the history books but if the "story"  is distortions, deliberately contrived to serve a purpose then they are not the facts anymore.
Truth seakers see facts as the only thing worth dealing with not because they are particularly virtuous but that nothing else can replace them when dealing with a subject, if you really want an answer to a problem, not just win an argument or the outcome of a situation.
   Spin, distortion lying selective reporting , is a method of achieving an outcome. So is holding  a gun to someone's head and taking their money. Stealing a persons right to knowledge is a fraud of significant degree. Perpetrating a falsehood deliberately, is reprehensible and often illegal. Legality and morality don't often mix so let's not go too far that way, but if you have been falsely assured of something important, it is a serious matter. Insurance policy etc.
   In a case where someone is proscecuted and the police collect evidence of innocence but do not make it available. what is their moral situation IF knowing of the existance of the proof of innocence material, they ignore it and just present the evidence that leads to a guilty verdict?
Misleading parliament is supposed to be a serious matter. What about the MSM misleading Australia? We have become so used to it we don't expect or require anything better. What a sad state of affairs THAT is. Their lack of accountability is something we cannot afford. For years I have affirmed tha ANY political party that took on the media momopolies would get MY vote. No-one has been strong enough or motivated to do it. The same with the influence of the church. Howard sucked up to scientology even. Consenting adults can go to church as often as they wish but I don't want the church interfering in politics, because IF you let one in you have to let them all in. Keep church and state separate, and you have a better base for a reasoned outcome that is in the interests of humanity at large

42 long

August 5. 2012 06:20 PM



If you're referring to my post above yours, the answer is that nothing is wrong about The Boss.
On reflection, my first line should have said "even apart from the music inclusion ...... "

By the way, in my pre-retirement role the presentation of training workshops and chairing of various meetings was commonplace and I regularly used music.

Often I played the one song over and over in the background as participants arrived and enjoyed their welcoming cuppa. Then at an appropriate time in the presentation I would explain the relevance of the music to the info being considered.

The River by Garth Brooks and The Road Less Travelled by Graeme connors were two of my favourites. The former urges courage and perseverance at a task, and the latter urges that inappropriate shortcuts (the low road) are wrong even though many many slackers commonly take that journey. The high road (the road less travelled) is the honourable road.

Good music is inspirational and the people I was involved with loved the approach.

Of course if you're a lying swine Abbotteer then music might inspire guilt; that's probably why  Hockey et al aren't inspired by it.

Did you hear the Insiders comment today, that Abbott was inspired by Bob Dylan's melodies but not his words. Now that's a very interesting slant on Dylan who was an avid wordsmith in the area of social justice.

Or rather, it is a very interesting insight into Howard, the prig, the prick. Maybe the lady PM of his time banned him from enjoying Dylan's words. I'm sure Mrs Boo-kay from Bennelong wouldn't like scruffs like Dylan.


Yes, it is the degree of antagonism and malice and planful lying while at the same time failing to present the true news that characterises the media today.

In past times media barons certainly took a view towards or against the government while at the same time more or less fulfilling their role as purveyors of news, and more or less acknowledging the relative strengths and weaknesses of both sides. But not now.


August 5. 2012 06:31 PM


WOW!! what a trio of quality commentry...AA, 42long, Psyclaw..You'd NEVER see such honest, lucid commentry on right-wing blog sites. Thank god for the lefties to maintain the debate!...we don't need to raise our heads to see the "light on the hill"..it is before our eyes all day every day with a steady vision and sure step...Onward Excelsior!!


August 5. 2012 06:35 PM


Peyclaw...my mistake, I wasn't paying attention to what I was reading. I realised what you meant too late!...Mind you, I'm a Zappa man myself!


August 5. 2012 07:10 PM


Did anyone see ABC. news24 tonight..I thought they went out of their way to put a panegyric about Newman's cancer scheme to the public. What a crawl! But then, it is better to reasure the public than have that worm create fear and despair.


August 5. 2012 07:40 PM


Hi Psyclaw

Thankyou for your well throughtout fantastic comments. Jaycee is correct between you, Ad Astra, 42 Long all in a row brilliant.

The only difference I will make to Jaycee is Jaycee is one of you.  

Brilliant fantastic reading thankyou to our row of 4.

Psyclaw, when I mentioned Wayne Swan's speech I didn't mean to just concentrate on the Bruce Springsteen reference. I always enjoy Wayne Swan's speeches, he is the world's greatest Treasurer fact.

As for the Coalition's snide comments, what about Hockey in a pink dress, then chasing all over Canberra with cardboard cutouts of Kevin Rudd. What about Abbott in a Shower cap everyday, and then we had of course the Hockey Pokey in the Senate.

At least we don't see the Labor Ministers running out of Parliament to escape a vote, who said the Coalition was well disciplined. How many of them get thrown out of Question time they behave like a bunch of idiots.



August 5. 2012 08:15 PM

Tom of Melbourne

Ad Astra said – ” ‘Ju-liar’, Ditch the Witch, Bob Brown’s Bitch, putting our PM in a hessian bag and dumping her out to sea, kicking her to death, urging her to fall on her sword, and the most recent ‘unproductive old cow’?  If there were, please remind us.”

As a matter of interest, I think Malcolm Fraser was far more widely loathed, than Gillard. The protests that accompanied many of his public appearances were more rowdy, accompanied by egg, tomato and, on occasions, paint throwing.

I recall a range of particularly insulting terms and language and imagery being used towards Fraser during his term. It was warranted too.

So I don’t think there is anything particularly exceptional about the language directed towards Gillard.

I think you are mature enough to recall Fraser, so I think your memory is selective, yet again.

Tom of Melbourne

August 5. 2012 08:20 PM


I have not posted here for a few months. I recently lost my Mum (and I am recovering from pneumonia). She was a "Country Party" voter, but bless her, she was so thrilled when Julia Gillard became PM. And even more proud when she won the election. Her reasoning was the men have had so many goes at getting it right we should let a woman try. She minded not that Julia is Labor. It was more important that she lived long enough to see Australia have a female PM. Mum was 95 when she died. She did forgive me for following a different political path.

She also had a very established distrust of the media.

Is anybody picking up similarities in the way our government is
reported and the negative reporting of our current Olympians. All are painted as disappointments.

I am still managing to read the articles and daily comments and follow some of Lyns' links, so thank you all.  My heart goes out to you Tall Turkey. Do take care of yourself.


August 5. 2012 08:22 PM

42 long

Many more get banished and also ministers who have had to resign are far more prevalent in the LNP ranks. Are they really the cream of society? Born to rule. Are the professed Christians among them particularly nice upstanding and virtuous, who lead by example amd are an inspiration to us all. No way Jose'
Judge the tree by the fruit ir bears. On that basis you would pull it up by the roots and plant something else as quick as possible.

42 long

August 5. 2012 08:42 PM


Hi Shirley

Thankyou for coming in to talk to us. I am so very sorry to hear of your sad loss, your Mum sounds like she was a beautiful Lady.


August 5. 2012 08:43 PM


Tom, since you kept your post to a semblance of sincerety, I will credit you with a civil response.
Malcolm Fraser, you will recall, colluded (much now to his regret,I surmise)with Kerr to replace the elected govt' of the day. No more than a coup. As you say, he deserved the epithets. Julia Gillard has done nothing more than replace a voted out minister to become Prime Minister and win and negotiate the leadership of the nation...What's the complaint? Why the insults? Don't we Australians know how to play fair anymore?


August 5. 2012 08:47 PM

42 long

Shirley, I posted before you posted, so they crossed. Welcome back. I am new here and It is the best.
  Lots of old Mums vote Country party often because they always did. Like rusted on labor in the old days. Tall Turkey is not having it easy. I am in the same boat so I sympathise with him. best wishes for some relief TT.
Anyhow it's nice that your mum was keen to see a woman in the top position. A pity a few more womwen don't support her when she is treated so shabbily by some men who should rise above their sexism and stop bullying her so mercilessly. It's not something to make me (as a man) proud
   We have witnessed two incredibly unlikely events recently.
  A dark person in the white house and an unmaaried woman non theist PM of Australia

42 long

August 5. 2012 09:12 PM

Wake Up


If you were genuinely offended then I apologise, but I stand by my comment because what you said was nothing more than regurgitated LNP dribble, which to MY great offence has been dutifully repeated ad infinitum by a lazy and complaisant media.

Let's be honest here, you spent several paragraphs demonstrating how campaigning proprietors and journalists were common place and have been the norm for decades, but then using typical right wing logic, suggested that the very same proprietors and journalists had nothing to do with the constant negative press being hurled at Labor day after day after day.

Give me a break DMW, your faux concern for the demise of political discourse doesn't fool me for a second and your assertion that I resorted to name calling as a substitute is nothing more than a second rate strawman of obvious proportions.

Wake Up

August 5. 2012 09:45 PM


thank you for well considered and reasoned response to my comment.

I will read it again after a late dinner and look at the many other comments and respond then (after also looking at other pertinent articles in my news feeder)


August 5. 2012 09:49 PM

Tom of Melbourne

jaycee, Ad Astra suggests that Gillard is subjected to more derogatory comments that previous Prime Ministers. This simply is not true, as I have indicated.

The fact that Fraser was legitimately loathed isn’t relevant when discussing this point.

It is no use overplaying the language and imagery used against Gillard, that applied to Fraser was far more bitter and insulting, as Ad Astra would be aware.

Fraser was a figure of hate. He was routinely portrayed as a nazi, his image edited accordingly, for example….


Tom of Melbourne

August 5. 2012 09:58 PM


Acerbic Conehead Hi and welcome. I read just a few words before I recognised your inimitable style. You are welcome as the Ides of September, when the grumbles about Abbortt turn to rumbles and he will either be gone by early December or the whole LNP will be in total confusion - don't want him but who else is there, that's the only reason he's still there now.

To all Swordsfolks who have wished me well in my continuing surgical dramas, thank you so very much, you do give me heart.

After my FAILed surgery on the 19th July, when instead of my prostate being partially removed, my bladder got torn instead, I was due originally to return to hospital on Tuesday 7th, with the damage hopefully healed, and the TURP (trans-urethral resection of the prostate) hopefully finally to be done. But when they discovered on Thursday 3rd my bladder was infected from 14 days' continuous catheter insertion (?!!) they wanted me to go tomorrow (Monday) at 4PM for intravenous antibiotics. I'm on antibiotic capsules ever since Thursday, but I wish to Dog they'd given me antibiotic cover first instead of now the enemy is already within. I hope my kidneys are OK, that's my greatest fear but not my only one.  

I was very early to bed tonight, around 6, the antibiotics and stuff are making me feel the way Abbortt looks - bedraggled and beaten up!

[btw I said a few days ago he's had his face polished - looks worse than if he'd been Botoxed - but now he's had his hair dyed near-black too. Alpha Male? hahahahahah. Pussy more like.]

But Dam a half hour or so ago I got a phone call waking me up, wanting me to go to the hospital at 8AM instead for tests, (urgh, coldest weather in memory, rush hour through Adelaide centre,) so Folks you can place your bets on whether my surgery (the hospital's official admission form spells it sugery)
goes ahead on Tuesday. I hae me doots.

I would not feel so very dudded if - well several things, but most of all because this is deja vu happening all over again, except last time, 4 years ago, it was my darling J**** who whilst having surgery for something else entirely, had her spleen totally destroyed by the sucking device, which was supposed to keep the site clear of inconvenient fluid, sucking in her spleen instead. J**** nearly died, in intensive care for a fortnight, ill for months, and if you don't know the function of the spleen the internet will tell you. It's the repository for reserve fresh blood, and the centre of one's immune system, so J**** could die of just about any infection these days. I was furious, literally sickened (I actually fainted!) when I found what they had done to J****.

Her surgeon told us it was the first time he'd ever done that  
to a patient . . . Well funny that, have a guess what my surgeon told me?!!!

So we feel very very special, J**** and me. I looked after her for months, heart in my mouth every time she was at all unwell, now she's looking after me, and I am a much worse whinger - but I have been in huge pain, and there's more literally bloody deja bloody vu to come, or maybe worse. Yes, probably worse.  

So maybe tomorrow after my tests I'll get back to you all, at least I can take my laptop to bed with me there. But I will not be coming out of hospital from 8AM tomorrow until hopefully it's all fixed, maybe Friday? But I am very much twice bitten, and my heart is in my mouth again.

Shirley thank you for your well-wishes, I hope your recovery from pneumonia was rapid and complete, my brother has had it nearly terminally, I know it can be very troublesome.

But I'm TalkTurkey, not Tall at all, I'm a shortarse actually.Smile

Anyway I would rather some people said some simple good wishes here, than that whole massed choirs of happy clappers sing songs invoking their Almighty delusion to intercede on my behalf. Thanks again Comrades.  

TPS and Twitter, with Lyn's Links, mean that hospital at least is not complete boredom. In fact it's a lot like what I do a lot of the time anyway at home, except in bed instead of sitting up.

Jaycee I echo your comments on everybody of goodwill here, too many I'd leave out if I started mentioning individuals, you-all know who I mean.  
Psyclaw your slap to "Ex Labor voter" was very perfection. On ya.

There's always more to write but I better go back to bed I guess.    


August 5. 2012 09:59 PM


"...the fact that Fraser..." and yet Tom..you picked him deliberately to make your point....I now lose patience with your imbecility....you..are an idiot.


August 5. 2012 10:12 PM

Tom of Melbourne

Whitlam was also subjected to a similar level of “hate” attack.

“w HITLA m” etc.

So of the Prime Ministers of the past 40 years, about half of them have been attacked with about the same vigour as Gillard.

The point of this is to illustrate that Ad Astra often loses the plot in his hyperbole.

Tom of Melbourne

August 5. 2012 11:01 PM


Lyn @7.40pm, exactly. And I'll make any sort of bet that Swan hasn't had to have a special calculator, unlike the shadow Treasurer.


On that basis you would pull it up by the roots and plant something else as quick as possible.

I wouldn't bother replanting it, jaycee. Far better to sow the earth it occupied with salt, burn the offending plant and root out and destroy any seedlings.


August 5. 2012 11:25 PM


Tony Still Wants to Axe That Tax!

Things have changed since they passed the carbon tax,
But Tony Abbott says we must still face facts.
Don’t be fooled into calling it a ‘price.’
That’s Gillard pretending that it’s something nice.

A science of climate change philosophy?
Crap! The carbon tax will cause catastrophe!
He stands by every one of his predictions
Though Combet calls them deceits and fictions!’

The doom he foretold will come to Whyalla.
That town will prove a false Valhalla
To Labor dupes who stayed to prove him wrong.
Emerson will regret his silly song.

Look how we Aussies have been distracted
From how our landscape has been impacted
By recent Chinese heavy investment
Which now needs scrutiny and assessment.

And coming in are credible reports
About the harm that tax has done our sports!
The world’s too hot? Ice caps no longer cold?
Who cares? Oz has lost its will for winning gold!

Links and illustrations at polliepomes.wordpress.com/.../


August 5. 2012 11:34 PM

Truth Seeker

Paticiawa, the word prolific comes to mind.
Nice one


Truth Seeker

August 5. 2012 11:37 PM


Whew there is a lot of comment from today to get through.

On the abuse thing ToM raises a good point about the abuse of Mr Fraser. I well remember being one of those that hurled abuse toward him during the election campaign of 1975.

I suspect the level of abuse toward Ms Gillard is different in that it is coming from some that, in the past, would not have said some of those things publicly and if they said it privately not expected (or allowed?) it to be reported. I don't recall any abuse of Fraser, Hawke, Keating or Howard in the style that is currently being used by the 'shock jocks' on radio, television and in print but could easily be proven wrong.

I am rethinking my position on the name calling that is thrown at Ms Gillard and wondering if I am suffering from a form of sexism and being over protective of her because she is a woman. I would be most offended if my mother, sisters or wife had to put up with that sort of name calling yet would tell brothers, father or mates to harden the eff up if they were to take umbrage at being called names.

In my news feed from the last couple of days was an interesting point of view from one woman on the old cow thing.

Equality these days means having to take abuse too Drag0nista

Thanks Drag0n lady for prompting me to question myself.


August 6. 2012 12:04 AM



"wondering if I am suffering from a form of sexism and being over protective of her because she is a woman. I would be most offended if my mother, sisters or wife had to put up with that sort of name calling yet would tell brothers, father or mates to harden the eff up if they were to take umbrage at being called names."

Is being overprotective of a woman being attacked with extreme venom, malice and aforethought by men and by colonition attack dog women being "sexist"?  Again, it is the degree and extent which is relevant, and in JG's case the degree and extent is extreme. Sexism doesn't come into it. Human kindness, empathy and understanding or their absence is the issue.

It's not as though she is merely called a fool, or even a liar. The abuse is far more constant and malicious than that. I guess you wouldn't help a lady on the street being verbally and seriously abused by an out of control drunk for fear of being sexist.

As to your reaction to brothers, father and mates who have been set upon, IMHO the same rules apply. If they are subject to unreasonable, extreme, constant and vitriolic abuse and the best you can offer is to tell them to HTFU, then IMHO you get a big F (fail) in regard to being a true friend or relative.

I'm sorry DMW but you are fence straddling yet again. Make up your mind where you stand and cease the equivocation. Purleeze! Two steps forward and two steps back is idly running up and down on the spot.


August 6. 2012 12:13 AM


TT Comrade

All the best in this difficult week for you. I've had about 8 ops in the last decade and my firm maxim is "take as many drugs as you can convince the medics to give you".

A classic story in our family describes my unseemly conduct after one op. SWMBO was allowed into the recovery room where I was only about 50% compus mentis. She asked how I was going, and apparently in an unsubtle and loud manner I exclaimed "the effing nurses won't give me any more drugs".

This shows that I can be a grumpy old bastard, but it also shows that I was faithfully following my own maxim.

Good luck TT Comrade and may Dog Albitey give you great pain control.


August 6. 2012 02:20 AM


Hi Ad
there is a lot to digest in your response.

There are people who are only too ready to overlook any mistakes, stumbles or otherwise that this government makes and when they are pointed out by the media start crying foul. Many of these people then label the media as an enemy of the government.

If you choose the media as an enemy they are only too willing to oblige.

Step back. If there needs to be an enemy the first (and probably only) enemy is the LNP opposition parties.

How did the current situation develop such that the media is now considered by some as a mortal enemy of the government? I am not sure if this a chicken and egg question or a have you stopped beating your wife question but either way there is no simple 'one' answer.

To pick one point in time where the whole thing started coming unstuck for the government I go back to that moment that Mr Rudd chose to hang Peter Garret out to dry over the home insulation programme.

The government, and in particular, Mr Rudd, started looking weak and vulnerable and they started reacting rather than acting.

Ms Gillard has been unable to shake those perceptions off and in ways compounded the (mis)perceptions in the secretive way the Mining Tax was 'fixed' and have failed misarably over the whole Asylum Seeker issue which she stated was on of her three major priorities.

The Asylum Seeker issue is probably the best example of the government being its' own worst enemy writ exremely large and by Ms Gillard saying she would fix it it is a problem of her own making.

There are things around the negotiations over forming the minority government that created problems and have hamstrung the government and have made it difficult for them to sell themselves which probably would take up pages to go through.

Some current examples of the government being its' own worst enemy.

The reports on what Kim Beazely is supposed to have said in private talks. Who leaked them and why?

The leak of recent internal polling. Again who leaked and why?

In their own way both trivial but still not exactly a sign that this a confident and sure footed administration.

Something that may not be on the radar at the moment but has the potential to backfire is the NDIS funding wrangle.

The Productivity Commission reccommended that it be fully funded by the federal government. I don't know who made the decision to ask the states to co-fund the trials and why that decision was made. I have not seen or heard any case being made for the states funding part of the trial.

Was it a 'political' decision or was there some other advice that it should go that way?

As sure as night follows day if it was in any way a politcal decision rather than a practical policy consideration it will come back to bite them in the bum.


August 6. 2012 02:29 AM


I think it was Keynes who is credited with saying When the facts change I change my mind What do you do sir?

I am capable of reconsidering my position on many things particularly when I have been part of a discussion that criticises my thinking and points to another way at looking at things.

Take a lesson from Ad, discuss it rather than accusing me of fence sitting.

Wake Up
maybe you could heed the wise words of some anonymous wit
Don't talk poo to a plumber


August 6. 2012 06:54 AM


Couldn't sleep a wink past five
(Dammit, yeah, I'm still alive)
Coffee, shower, toast by six:
Wonder when it all be fixed?
Must be on the road by seven
On the road to hell-or-heaven;
Hospital and tests at eight:
Don't dare be a minute late!
Guess the tests be done by nine:
Nothing then but to recline.
Might be back asleep by ten -
Hope to sleep from then till - then!

Sorry I don't have the rhyme or the time to go on now, might be able to get back later. "Sugery" (sic) not until tomorrow at earliest.

Combining some of my benign advice -

Yeah rip the evil Religion Tree out and poison the roots


Don't poison the ground, instead plant the Herb Superb, referred to at the end of Revelations as the Tree of Life for the healing of nations, bearing twelve manner of fruits - fibre, oil, food, pain-relief, appetite stimulant, cancer treatment, glaucoma oh you can work it out. (They couldn't count past twelve in those days.)

Unforch Psyclaw I'm allegic to morphine, in spectacular fashion. Rather takes the fun out of surgery. And they don't let me use the Herb Superb in there, it's too benign and there's no profit for the drug companies in it atm. And God would surely punish me, well look what he done to me last time!


August 6. 2012 07:15 AM



Welcome back and commiserations on your loss.  Hope your recovery from ill health continues.  I agree with you about the negative reporting on the Olympics, I was only saying the other day, the negativeness and sourness with ONLY silver was disgusting.  I hope other Australians pick it up and they may start to see through the MSM.

Talk Turkey

Good luck......look forward to reading your next comment in a couple of hours.


I'm off to your place now, thanks for the great pome.


August 6. 2012 07:20 AM



# 81 Parody of journalism (2)- Australian Treasurer called parody of a human being, Uthers Say
The man has an almost pathological dislike not only for the Prime Minister, not only for the government, but also for Wayne Swan. Again treatment of the lady who was trying to act like an adult among the boys, coupled with his compulsive need to express his dislike of the Prime Minister raises the question of whether he has difficulty dealing with competent women.

Newmania- The Scalpel State, Only The Depth Varies
As Newmanians know, this is just the latest in a growing list of insulting cuts. After four months of governing, I imagine there are few Newmanians who have not been disadvantaged or disappointed by something King Campbell has altered, cancelled or cut. This list is not complete; it's a casual list of what I can remember

Did an ABC reporter really say That? Advocating Australia break international laws, Turn Left 2013
increasingly shrill Right-wing, Opposition Cheerleading slant of the ABC has amused and outraged many across social media. Here is ABC’s social media reporter, Latika Bourke discussing the arrival of more refugee boats with Nick Champion (Federal Labor Member for Wakefield, South Australia).

YOU OWE OUR PM AN APOLOGY, SIR., Tara Moss, The Hoopla
Taken out of context, or just taken out of the conference? To recap: “So it’s designed [to slaughter] non-productive old cows – Julia Gillard’s got to watch out.”
That is some context, Mr Farley.

The facts about Australia’s asylum seeker “problem”, Independent Australia
We shouldn’t forget that on those leaky unauthorized boats are valuable citizens, who will improve our lives. New Australians include a job creating Burmese entrepreneur, an Iranian researcher working on a cancer cure, or a talented Afghan novelist. There might even be a Tamil public servant destined to implement policy for, shock horror, a future Coalition Government.

Bringing back the Brough: 10 of the worst things Mad Mal did in office, Tracker
Brough won pre-selection courtesy of a good old-fashioned membership drive (which some have unkindly suggested is also known as a branch stack). Whatever it was, it was enough to get him across the line in Fisher, but with high profile federal Libs like Joe Hockey, Julie Bishop and Malcolm Turnbull lining up to back ‘the other guy’ – rising star James McGrath – Brough is unlikely to simply walk back into a cabinet position

HULLSTOPIAN: Baillieu’s “tough on crime” pledge replaced by “conference sessions” for “grossly violent” brats, Vex News
The Sunday Age is delighted with news the Victorian Liberal government’s promise to be “tough on crime” was a non-core commitment, with teen thugs who “commit acts of gross violence” to face a gruelling round of “diversion programmes,” including “extra police warnings,” “education program(me)s” and “conference sessions” between perps

Not a Media Release from the RBA: 7 August Interest Rate Cut, Stephen koukoulas, Market Economics
In Australia, recent data suggest that the economy continued to grow at a solid pace. Some of this pick up is welcome given emerging capacity is some parts of the economy that was driven by a protracted period of sub-trend growth. Labour market conditions are firm, although the forward indicators for job creation point to softer conditions in the near term. The rate of unemployment

Guess what- Stimulus payments stimulate, so we're spending big, Peter Martin
‘‘Across the board, Australians have clearly felt like they were a little more inclined to spend their pennies in June than they have for quite a while,’’ said Australian National Retailers Association chief Margy Osmond. “This is a great set of figures, but it’s not the ‘recovery’ yet.”

IR’s ugly head; hooray for Olympic slump, Crispin Hull
role of an Opposition – it is not to keep the Government on its toes through constructive criticism and to provide alternative policies for an alternative government. Rather Abbott is acting as if the role is purely to make the Government look ineffective, venal and generally bad

National Disability Scheme … who pays-, Mungo MacCallum,  Hinterland Times
Well, yes. Abbot has spent the last four years inveighing against new taxes of any kind – except, of course, his own proposed impost on big business to pay for his lavish proposals for child care for the rich, but that is a great economic reform. Anything that comes from the government is, by definition, unconscionable,  

Fair Work Act, productivity and the balancing act between bosses and workers , Peter Gahan, The Conversation
In fact, the evidence over the period since the early 1990s shows the shift to enterprise bargaining in the first place had no substantive effect on productivity growth. Nor have the reforms introduced as part of the Workplace Relations Act under the Howard government, or the WorkChoices legislation – none of those reforms  

Class conflict , Gary Sauer-Thompson, Public Opinion
Big Business sure is going on and on about industrial relations, declining productivity and the Fair Work Act. It's the Gillard Government's fault. The ALP is refusing to change the regulations to increase company profits, reduce wages and decrease union power. It is the ALP that is responsible for the old culture of conflict and class division.

Policies on the run, Miglo, Café Whispers
Now here is something to consider: The Coalition have been predicting that the Mining Resources Tax (MRT) would deter foreign investment in Australia? And isn’t it a surprise to learn that the mining industry in Australia is 83 per cent foreign owned.  What isn’t surprising is the Opposition’s hypocrisy

Graphical Manipulations #3: The Connoisseur Tries to Impress The Powerful, Deknarf
Tony Abbot (Prime Ministerial hopeful of 20.6 million people) took a trip to China in order to impress the masters of some 1.4 billion people and tell them how to run their country. Tony was suitably impressed whilst the Chinese just thought ‘Bèn wàguò rèn’ [stupid foreigner]!

Tony Still Wants to Axe That Tax!, Patricia wa, Polliepomes
Things have changed since they passed the carbon tax, But Tony Abbott says we must still face facts. Don’t be fooled into calling it a ‘price.’That’s Gillard pretending that it’s something nice

Queensland terminates USD 75 million funding for Solar Dawn project
The government of Queensland, Australia has terminated USD 75 million in funding to the Solar Dawn concentrating solar power (CSP) project. As a result, the Australian federal government has referred the future of the project to the newly created Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA)

Today’s Front Pages
Australia Newspaper Front Pages for 6 August 2012


August 6. 2012 08:33 AM

Ad astra

LYN'S DAILY LINKS updated: www.thepoliticalsword.com/.../...-DAILY-LINKS.aspx

Ad astra

August 6. 2012 08:35 AM

Ad astra

Talk Turkey
We are all thinking of you today as you go in hospital for tests and wish you all the best.

Ad astra

August 6. 2012 08:38 AM


Good morning everyone..AND to you TT. "Meditate - Medicate"...good luck with the doctors...My old dad had a saying he brought from Italy..: "Doctors, priests and lawyers..One will ruin your pocket, one will ruin your health and the other ; your soul".
I give notice here that I have been a horse groom and strapper (and sometime rider)for many years. I state with knowledge and certainty that most of the beasts I have handled are in posession of a higher level of USABLE..that's USABLE intellect than many right-wingers who post on these sites..For while a beast of the field has as much intellect as is useful for it to function alone or as a member of a herd, a lot of right-wingers have not the level of intellect required of a human to rationally and logically assess their and the public position in regards social necessities or policies, let alone make decisions based on such required knowledge.
The next election, indeed may hinge on such imbecillic patrons of racism, bigotism and economic rationalism.


August 6. 2012 09:27 AM



"discuss it rather than accusing me of fence sitting."

You evidently missed my 2nd, 3rd, and 4th paragraphs.

And in your reply to AA you continue to rabbit on about the various mistakes made by the government. I accept that those mistakes were made. I'd be surprised if any of the regulars at TPS didn't accept them.

But that's not the point.

What I reject are your constant claims /implications that the media has not given the government and JG particularly an intensely difficult time ....... much more than your minimisation of it as "the media merely campaigning against the government".

"Let's be honest here, you spent several paragraphs demonstrating how campaigning proprietors and journalists were common place and have been the norm for decades, but then using typical right wing logic, suggested that the very same proprietors and journalists had nothing to do with the constant negative press being hurled at Labor day after day after day.

Give me a break DMW, your faux concern for the demise of political discourse doesn't fool me for a second and your assertion that I resorted to name calling as a substitute is nothing more than a second rate strawman of obvious proportions."

The above quote from Wake Up says it all and saves me composing much the same.

And there is no evidence that in this matter you follow your own advice per Keynes  When the facts change I change my mind What do you do sir?


August 6. 2012 09:47 AM



The Productivity Commission reccommended that it be fully funded by the federal government. I don't know who made the decision to ask the states to co-fund the trials and why that decision was made. I have not seen or heard any case being made for the states funding part of the trial.

The Productivity Commission recommended that the NDIS be federally funded and also that the $4.7 billion currently spent by states on disability services be collected into the funding pool. (Page 675 of the report)

Since the states will be contributing to the full scheme if the PC's recommendation is followed, it is unsurprising that they have been asked to contribute to the trial.

Are you putting this up as another "mistake" of the government, as the 2nd and 3rd lines of the quote above suggests.


August 6. 2012 10:06 AM

Truth Seeker

TT, best wishes for a speedy resolution and recovery.

Truth Seeker

August 6. 2012 10:28 AM


please point out to me where I have written anything like the media (is) merely campaigning against the government.

Please point to where I have written that I like and/or approve of everything the media writes or says.

There is a lot of vendetta journalism out there and it deserves being put to the sword. There are individuals that hold grudges and let their personal beliefs get in the road of even semi reasonable journalism.

Does that mean that ALL journalists and ALL the media are engaged in a vendetta? Are all journalists guilty of manufacturing stories and distorting the facts to suit some apparently hidden agenda?

I don't think even you would believe that.

What you, Wake Up and others have done is to take a statement that the government is its' own worst enemy and turned it into a defence by me of the media and some have taken that mean I am a right wing nut job and a troll.

There are people who complain that the media too often plays the man and not the ball and see every comment that is even slightly critical of the government as heresy or even maybe treason. When it is pointed out that it is not all like that many of the same people drop the ball and play the man.

Wake Ups' statement @ August 4. 2012 09:39 PM:
What rubbish DMW, to make an observation like that you would have to be either an LNP troll, deaf and blind, or living under a rock. is of that ilk.

If you take the time to go back to my original comment on this, as Ad has acknowledged, I was pointing out that there is nothing new in this.

The depth may vary but as it has always been, it will always be. The media has, and will be, for some forseeable future a powerful platform for persuasion and there are times and people who may use and even abuse the platform for personal gain or to inflict pain.

It is up to those who need to persuade to use the media as one of the tools to persuade we mere mortals of the merits of the proposition it wishes us to take on board.

Here is a plain and simple fact of life: if a government thinks and believes the media is the enemy then it is doomed.

I do not think that all, or even most people within the government see the media as the main enemy and are getting on with the job and doing it for the most part very well.

If you believe this to be a defence of the media and my approval of everything written or said so be it, but, I would contend that, it is you that has been fooled by your own one eyed view of the world.


August 6. 2012 11:25 AM


The Productivity Commission recommended that the NDIS be federally funded and also that the $4.7 billion currently spent by states on disability services be collected into the funding pool.

If I were to rewrite it as: Th PC reccommended that all extra (new?) funds come from the commonwealth would I be interpreting it correctly?

As you seem to have read the report please educate me and others on it.

In answer to your question Are you putting this up as another "mistake" I do not know  at this point if it is a mistake and the lack of smoke signals on it suggest it may not be or the government has gotten away with it at the moment.

There are some people that wrote that the NDIS trials were 'a political win' for the Prime Minister which I find intersting. I don't recall reading that it was a policy win for the PM or the government. Most likely that is a sad reflection on the way the COAG meeting was reported.

I am questioning the reasons for going with co-funding. If I am mistaken and the PC has said that the states are to come up with new funds for the NDIS then my questioning is irrelevant.

If it is the case that all new funds shoould be provided by the commonwealth then I would like to know why a different course was taken. There may well be sound policy reasons that this path was chosen but I, and suggest, most others are not aware of those reasons.

I do not think, nor am I suggesting, that making decisions for political reasons is the sole preserve of the current government but as has been shown time and again when a decision is made for political reasons over sound and well argued policy reasons it will eventually come back to bite in the bum.

Any government that takes the political course makes a rod for its' own back and sows the seeds of becoming its' own worst enemy.


August 6. 2012 11:51 AM

42 long

  The way i see it the Federal government is trying to hang onto it's (small) surplus and the Liberal state governments are doing their best to make sure it is destroyed. The massive sackings will go a long way to achieving this by transfer of tax receipts and liabilities. I have little doubt that they will also create a trend to recession in those states which will be more of a problem long term than having a debt ccorrected more slowly. The debt correction in Qld is based on something prepsred by Peter Costello, and is a projection of some questionality. Tony hasn't got a problem with borrowing . He is said to have refinanced his house to the tune of 700.000.
  Counting on some extra money from the PM salary or mines or something?

42 long

August 6. 2012 11:56 AM


I have a lot of sympathy for DMW's position here.

First, lets get the obvious out of the way - the media is not giving the current Government an easy time.  They shouldn't have to, the Government has significant resources and ability to influence the public with their programs and practices.  That the LNP have crafted a better message and the Government doesn't seem to be able to get its story out is not the medias or LNPs fault.

Second, the reason the Government can't get it's message out is that they haven't managed to craft a story that Abbott is a dolt and can't answer an unscripted question to save himself (as Mark Riley proved a while ago).  Abbott will grasp any issue the paints the government in a negative light for as long as it takes to make the point - then let go.  The Government spends too much time defending a small point rather than selling the issue.  Look at the interchange between DMW & psyclaw above for a demonstration.  DMW makes a comment about the media's influence on the Government (that granted was not going to please everyone on this site), psyclaw responds and they end up exchanging views on the semantics of state government funding of the NDIS.  In effect Abbott or orther self interest groups set the agenda by picking on some relatively small and insignificant point - then the government spend all their time defending it rather than saying it is what it is and we're moving on.

On top of that - in an effort to appear "democratic" and " a broad church" if an ALP figure disagrees with party policy they'll go to the media - which gives the media and Abbott more to grab onto.

The media can also give the LNP a hard time - look at how NewsCorp and Fairfax are fighting between themselves to heap the greatest amount of criticism on Newman.  Again, the ALP needs to be out there and in this case throwing petrol on the fire - are they?  Not from what I've seen and I live in Queensland.


August 6. 2012 12:07 PM


An exception which proves the rule that the media are totally biased and not capable of self examination.

The shrinking public attention span George Megalogenis
A public servant told me something very interesting last week. The media, he said, was just talking to itself.
Obvious, but not in the way you might think. We were discussing how the 24-hour news cycle prevents government from pushing ideas in the way it once could.


Proudly bought to you by an unalloyed right nut job troll Tong


August 6. 2012 12:24 PM



Here are some quotes from your original post:

News Ltd is not Labor's biggest enemy it is moor likely that the current government is its' own worst enemy.

You are saying here that News Ltd is not Labor's biggest enemy. This is a put down of the government and a defence of News's malicious and ongoing agenda, by minimising its effect.

News outlets have become a powerful means of persuasion, of bending consumers to the will and the beliefs of the authors.' Could be modified to say 'News outlets have always been a powerful means of persuasion, ...' and it would then better reflect what has always been so.

Your rephrasing of AA says that News is no different to the press of the last 40 years. This too is painting an inaccurately benign view of the current situation. News is far worse in degree than the press has ever been. Your words disavow this and let News off the hook. Those words could well have been written by Murdoch in defence of his rags.

The major difference between today and forty years ago is that any fool with access to an internet connection can instantly publish their opinion (which is always absolutely correct) and point out how the media is totally biased and against everything that that particular author knows to be absolutely beyond doubt.

If you are not saying here that the media gets their bad reputation from fools on the internet, then what? Your use of "fool"s being responsible is again as if written by Murdoch to explain why there is so much criticism of his rags.

The Treasurer tells us he is inspired by an aging rock muso. I wonder if he is inspired by (or has read) any economists such as Smith, Krugman or Quiggin? Surely it would inspire more confidence that the nations chief economic guide had been inspired by more than an aging rocker.

Although this was not in your original post, this Credlin-ish statement was hawked all over the media by the Colonition after the speech .... it comes straight from last Wednesday's Credlin handout telling the team what tack to take to mock Swan and his speech. And here you are saying the precise thing we heard from Hockey.

This is a very telling opinion of yours and again makes me wonder which side of the fence you are actually on. My gut feeling is that you are not on the same side as me.


August 6. 2012 12:26 PM


Thanks 2353,
I expect you would enjoy Mega's blog I just linked to above.

I was saving some similar thoughts how the government gets trapped often by Mr Abbott's adept use of the media cycle for round 12 of the little sparring match currently in play Smile

Here's a plan maybe I should send my thoughts on contentious topics to you for editing and bashing into a more palatable state for some readers here.

Nah, maybe not, it might spoil the apparent fun of kicking a supposed right wing nut job troll for some.

Hmm, what is reCaptcha telling me : rymental member


August 6. 2012 12:27 PM

42 long

If you have ever been directly involved with trying ot get a message out through the media, you will have some idea of how difficult it is. It has to be attention grabbing. They are there to sell their papers. NO other reason. Certainly Not to do you a favour.( Unless it suites them)
   Next you have to make sure that it is not selectively tampered with to make it come out some other way. This is exactly what is done. It's called editing.. I've been there and tackled newso's and their reply is/was It has to come out anti-(whatever) and " there are only 2 kinds of Journo's in Australia. Those who work for Rupert Murdoch and those who are GOING to." That is the reality, so let's stop the bullshit in this discussion.
   Of course from time to time some come out with a burst of fresh air. They are not the majority who like to keep the salary coming in.

42 long

August 6. 2012 12:32 PM

Ad astra

You raise some further interesting points.  To deal first with the phenomenon of ‘leaking’ that you mentioned near the end of your comment, personally I find it distasteful when an individual gives a confidential document to another not authorized to have it.  The ‘leaker’ is generally intent on doing harm to another, and in leaking is taking a decision alone or with little consultation, or putting it another way, is acting in an arrogant, authoritarian way for his or her own benefit, the antithesis of fair play.  When a leaker leaks against his or her own side, that is treachery.  We don’t know who leaked the Beasley comment, or whether he actually made it, but if it was a Labor person, that would be shameful.  If Labor people are leaking against Labor, or even making statements detrimental to Labor, they are indeed enemies, internal ones.

The actions of Kevin Rudd regarding the HIP and the ETS are categorized by many as ‘mistakes’, and indeed I have often cited his retreat from his position on the ETS as a turning point for his and Labor’s fortunes.  

Turning to Julia Gillard’s ‘mistakes’, you cite asylum policy as an example.  While her foray into the East Timor proposal has been widely ridiculed, there now seems consensus among regional partners that a regional solution is necessary.  As a seed that may germinate into a regional scheme under the Bali process, in the fullness of time East Timor may not be judged so harshly.  

Labor did develop and legislate a Malaysia arrangement, only to have it denied by the High Court.  So was it a mistake to have developed it in the first place?  Of course, the Greens would say so.  Labor’s attempt to reach a compromise with the Coalition failed because Tony Abbott and Scott Morrison were intent on giving the Government nothing at all.  Was it a Government mistake to try to negotiate?  Looking at the whole asylum issue I feel it is too simplistic to regard Labor’s efforts as a mistake, an error of judgement in dealing with this complex multifacetted matter where there are so many players with so many different agendas.  In my view, neither is the fact that Julia Gillard set herself to solve the issue, a mistake.  Conceding defeat and offering to do nothing would have been.

Nor do I see her handling of the NDIS issue a mistake, and in fact much of the commentariat agrees she did well.  As Psyclaw points out, the Productivity Commission recommended that States contribute from funds already being devoted to disability services, and also by discontinuing inefficient taxes.  

Returning to my original comment to you, I feel that we need to be circumspect about what we label as a mistake, when we are dealing with extremely complex matters.  Sometimes we label a move as a mistake simply because we disagree with it.  To give an example, I disagree strongly with the use by Tony Abbott of his three word slogans, which fly in the face of the complexity of the issues to which they refer, yet would not label them as a ‘mistake’ on his part, since politically they have served him well.

Having spent my professional life dealing with complexity, often when the problem superficially looked simple enough, time and experience has taught me to be circumspect in assessing problems and assigning labels.  That is why I hesitate to label events as ‘mistakes’, and by corollary, retreat from the notion that, based on what observers regard as its ‘mistakes’, Labor is its own worst enemy.

Of course the Coalition is its immediate enemy, but the much of the media has joined forces with the Coalition to defeat the Government.  That is not saying the media is the only enemy, simply that it is a potent adversary, which makes the battle uneven and unfair.  Neither is it saying that Labor is solely blaming the media for its electoral problems, and that Labor is blameless.  

In my view, to deny the power of the media, to deny that it sits in the middle between politics and the people and influences the electorate towards its viewpoint, is to fly in the fact of the facts.  I’m not saying that applies to you.  I suspect we are close to the same position on many aspects of politics.  We are allowed though to differ agreeably on others.

Ad astra

August 6. 2012 12:46 PM

42 long

  Very few things in life are simple especially when you are dealing with things as complex as peoples attitudes and beliefs.
   Anyone who constantly reduces all things to dead simple is attempting to mislead and confuse.(The opposite of the stated proposition)
Adas your analysis,I am in furious agreement with. Wise counsel, no doubt from a lot of experience. I wish many would read and heed it. fear and vested interest are out there.

42 long

August 6. 2012 01:11 PM


Hi Ad and Everybody

Twitterverse for you:-

Bushfire Bill
Posted Monday, August 6, 2012 at 11:30 am
Regarding the ABC, it has been certified as having over half its commentary coming from the IPA (where Abbott is speaking today), and most of the other half coming from News Ltd. Yet you think it needs to have the lefties cleaned out?

And as for News Ltd., they have a sorry record of running stories that are not only critical of the government, but egregiously, outrageously wrong as to fact e.g. (Grech, kids water bottles at APH, almost anything about electricity pricing until just today).

Jack Sumner‏
No better evidence of institutionalised media bias than today's Oz fr. page headline "Labor muzzling press to hide failings: Abbott

Leroy‏_Lynch  Ross Gittins
Biased bleating on labour reform - Critics of Fair Work Act should reflect on IR law changes www.smh.com.au/.../...r-reform-20120803-23l0j.html #auspol

Overspending on NSW's inefficient electricity distribution network inflated power bills by over 200% in 6 years http://bit.ly/OCBZHE #nswpol

Queensland Online‏
Rural: Rudd must lead by Christmas, say backers http://bit.ly/PZsp0H #qld

Coalition straddling both sides of a barbed wire fence on foreign land ownership #auspol http://bit.ly/OEkz05

Pensioners worried about reforms, Whitsunday Times
It said the State Government was considering various options to address the problem including requiring people to move to smaller properties, asking them to pay a higher rent or share the property with others.

The BBG ‏
ABC News: Unions keep up fight against Queensland job cuts http://goo.gl/mag/XOS4g Held in Whitsundays @QLDWhitsundays

Robert Dow‏
Is the LNP about to cut western passenger rail services? --> http://railbotforum.org/mbs/index.php?topic=8882.0

450 jobs axed
Billy Colless, from public sector union Together, said their figures showed Townsville had lost between 400 and 450 jobs since the LNP came to office.There have been eight confirmed job cuts from the Department of Education, 15 confirmed job losses from the Department of Transport and Main Roads, 16 confirmed from Q-Build, and between 30 and 40 unconfirmed job cuts from the Skilling Queenslanders for Work program.

TheQldPublicServant ‏
Newman lied abt public service sackings and here is more evidence. #qldpol www.brisbanetimes.com.au/.../...0120803-23l4q.html … via @brisbanetimes #NewmanLied

Qld can't afford more for NDIS: Newman
Mr Newman said it was a "very cynical game of politics being played", with the federal government asking states for more contributions - especially since the Productivity Commission report into the NDIS said Canberra should fund the scheme.

Queensland government offer a new pay deal to public servants
It says the new offer does nothing to address that concern, and is a panicked attempt by the government to try to head off industrial action.

"The government has been lying to the Queensland community about what the previous offer was - the previous offer was a pay cut for public servants as well as no employment security," union secretary Alex Scott told ABC 612 Brisbane.

Abbott flags changes to law: Tony Abbott has recommitted a coalition gov't to removing parts of the Racial Discr...

Chris Barrett‏
Ha ha that's funny #qldpol Queensland Premier Campbell Newman's peace plan to end pay deadlock www.couriermail.com.au/.../story-fndo1yus-1226443411528 via @couriermail

Queensland Online‏
Newman's pay offer to be rejected: union http://bit.ly/OVUXwS #qld

#QandA tonight from Brisbane: Katie Noonan, @CraigEmersonMP, George Brandis, Bob Katter and @DebKilroy at 9.35pm AEST on

@bencubby It appears Andrew Bolt was referring to you www.smh.com.au/.../...ld-facts-20120730-23agk.html and perhaps also to Mike Carlton www.smh.com.au/.../...mmon-man-20120803-23knh.html Not Good

Comments regarding Tony Abbott’s Speech to the IPA

Latika Bourke ‏
Tony Abbott - if it's okay for David Marr to upset Christians why not the same for Andrew Bolt in upsetting Aboriginal activists

Marian Dalton‏
Tony Abbott's 'Freedom Wars' speech, confirming he'll repeal Racial Discrimination Laws. http://tinyurl.com/9sqaze8 #auspol

Miss Eagle‏
Is Abbott's Freedom of Speech speech a necessity to promote a Tea Party Agenda against Australia's national interest?

Leader of the Australian "T" party to amend Racial Discrimination Act to appease Andrew Bolt & the IPA www.tonyabbott.com.au/.../...lic-Affairs-Sydney.ar

Abbott flags changes to discrimination law
He again defended News Limited columnist Andrew Bolt, who was ruled to have breached the Racial Discrimination Act in articles he wrote on fair-skinned Aborigines.


August 6. 2012 01:37 PM



I envy your  superb wordsmith skills. And you have an extraordinary talent in assembling words in a way that implicitly expresses calm, as well as wisdom.


August 6. 2012 01:48 PM


DMW @ 12.26pm, I disagree with your view that Liealot uses the msm adeptly. On the contrary, it is the msm who ensure that Liealot appears to be adept, when in fact they control, manipulate and edit his sloganeering.

It isn't perfect as witnessed by his hypocritical, cynical and utterly brainless attempt to escape the chamber when Craig Thomson crossed to vote with the Noalition.

Stunts like that give weight to my argument that the notion of his being an adept user of the msm is simply incorrect. Rather the msm manipulates his stunts to make it seem that he is in control and knows what he's doing.

Frankly, I don't think he has the wit.

42 long @12.27pm, agree wholeheartedly. Until Rupert's iron grip on the msm is loosened, hopefully by incarceration in a dungeon devoid of contact with the outside world, we will continue to see the current situation continue and if it is possible, increased in ferocity and mendacity to satisfy his corrupt desire to unseat this government and install his halfwit puppets, the Liars Party.

Ad astra @12.32pm, nodding my head as I read your argument wrt the the PM's so called mistakes, but which in fact are no such thing, and would probably have been sensibly and honestly discussed, reported and debated in an msm not in the poisonous grip of the wizened foreigner.

Who has now turned on his candidate of choice for PM in the UK and is actively campaigning for Boris Johnson as Cameron's replacement. The sooner Rupert is stripped of power and sidelined, the better for everyone currently in his malevolent sphere of influence.


August 6. 2012 01:59 PM

Ad astra

Thank you for your kind words.

Ad astra

August 6. 2012 02:01 PM

Ad astra

If you wondered whether this piece on Media in the middle was shooting unnecessarily at a distant and diffuse target, glance through Tony Abbott’s speech today to the IPA, where he vigorously defends media freedom and even promises to repeal that part of the Racial Discrimination Act that brought Andrew Bolt undone.  Here are a few excerpts:

”Yet instead of ruefully conceding that criticism under these circumstances is only a fair cop likely to spur better performance, the current government’s response has been thinly veiled intimidation of critics masquerading as proposals for better regulation. Instead of mounting a better argument, this government’s inclination is to disqualify its critics. Its instinctive response to criticism is to bully people rather than to reason with them.

“This is not a government that argues its case. Mostly, it simply howls down its critics using the megaphone of incumbency. There’s the jihad against mining magnates for daring to question the government’s investment-sapping mining tax. There’s the claim that Gina Reinhart is a “danger to democracy” because she dared to buy an interest in a newspaper group and refused to endorse the Fairfax group’s existing editorial culture. There’s the assault on mum-and-dad anti-carbon tax protestors in Canberra as the “convoy of no consequence” or even the “convoy of incontinence”. The ferocity of this government’s return of serve often goes way beyond reasonable counter-argument to become a form of state-sponsored bullying.”

And:  ”To Justice Ray Finkelstein’s credit, there’s no specific “get News Ltd” vendetta evident in the report of his “Independent Inquiry into the Media and Media Regulation”. Still his recommendation that a powerful News Media Council should “set journalistic standards”, “enforce news standards” and “have power to require a news media outlet to publish an apology, correction, or retraction” looks like an attempt to warn off News Ltd from pursuing anti-government stories.”

Later on: The article for which Andrew Bolt was prosecuted under this legislation was almost certainly not his finest. There may have been some factual errors. Still, if free speech is to mean anything, it’s others’ right to say what you don’t like, not just what you do. It’s the freedom to write badly and rudely. It’s the freedom to be obnoxious and objectionable. Free speech is not bland speech. Often, it’s pretty rough speech because people are entitled to be passionate when they are arguing for what they believe to be important and necessary. Speech that has to be inoffensive would be unerringly politically correct but it would not be free.”  And: “The Coalition will repeal section 18C in its current form.”

Why is his speech so supportive of the media?  You know the answer.

Are you frightened?


Ad astra

August 6. 2012 02:15 PM


in Ad's response @ August 5. 2012 04:40 PM he wrote:
What I believe we are debating here is a matter of degree.  To what degree is today’s MSM worse (or better) than it was last century, during Menzies’ and Whitlam’s days.  Even those of us old enough to have lived during those times are unable to recall the details of MSM behaviour then.
My first point then is that the degree of demonization, and the breadth of it from much of the media, seems far greater than in the past ...
(my emphasis)

It seems that the demonisation of the government and the PM is worse than at any other time in our short history because it is in the here and now and for some it is absolutely untrue and uncalled for.

Take a journey back in time and read the writings of a celebrated (by some) past editor of The Hobart Mercury, one H.R. Nichols, and his vitriolic attacks over changes to industrial relations laws.

You will be able to track them down through the National Library's on-line search facilities.

Meandering through some other pages of newspapers from early last century you would be able to find many articles that make the current tripe thrown at the PM more like a love letter than a damning indictment of her.

I picked up on Ad's wording that News outlets have become a powerful means of persuasion ... to give a perspective that it has always been so and some have chosen to read this a defence of News Ltd because of later comment by me.

I can't recall the term for that and I am sure with your vastly superior knowledge you will be able to inform me of the correct terminology but it is a rewriting of my words to suit a belief of what is absolutely true and beyond doubt in the minds of some that I am nothing but a defender of News Ltd. The best way I can say it is, Psyclaw, that is absolute CRAP and you know it.

The major difference between today and forty years ago is that any fool with access to an internet connection can instantly publish their opinion ...

My use of 'any fool with access' was an admitedly poor paraphrasing of commentary on a similar topic elswhere that I don't instantly recall. There is a reasonable body of opinion that contends amongst other things that the first three to five comments on any blog set the tone for how the rest of the commentary will go and whether it will degenerate into a (usually) left vs right slanging match or a reasonable discussion on the merits of the thoughts of the original author. The problem is compounded by the fact that all of us that are fools (as do some intelligent and sensible people) have access and we that are fools are able to shoot of at the keyboard without thinking for half a moment about what we are typing. I know you do not have that problem that I apparently suffer.

It escapes my feeble intellect how you are able to rewrite my words into Your use of "fool"s being responsible is again as if written by Murdoch to explain why there is so much criticism of his rags.

I am probably totally wrong in thinking that because you have already drawn the delusion that I am a right wing, nut job, defender of Murdoch and all his legions of sychophantic media personel type troll that you unable to see it any other way. Your by far superior knowledge and intellect on these matters shine through and I am nothing but bedazzled.

I wrote The Treasurer tells us he is inspired by an aging rock muso ...

and you respond: .. this Credlin-ish statement was hawked all over the media by the Colonition after the speech .... it comes straight from last Wednesday's Credlin handout telling the team what tack to take to mock Swan ...

Oh well so be it, I am oviously a stooge and a lackey for the LNP. If the charge is having similar thoughts to some of Mr Swan's critics (that I came to through my own thinking) then I can do nothing else but plead guilty.

I didn't paticularly listen to Mr Hockey's response mostly because it is usually so predictable and frankly when he gets his whiny voice on I just instantly turn off. I did take note though of some comments by Clive Palmer about Redgum and other Aussie musos and and shook my head in wonderment but thought oh well that's Clive, he has a wonderful way of using the wrong metaphor to make a point.

I wrote my comment on the Springsteen thing before I heard the News Radio replay of Sunday's Insiders and ackowledge Ad's comments above and take the point that there was some PR success  by Swan breaking through to a different audience. None the less I would have more faith in Swan if he were able to also display some knowledge of people who write in the area that he is in charge of.

From your writing it is becoming more obvious to me you have a vastly superior and intimate knowledge of the inner workings of the media and politics to mine and I can only stand in awe of that.

Tell me, which media organisation did you work for or did you work with a politician. Did you work in the current or the old parliament house? Although it isn't vitally important it would be of interest so that I can gain an understanding of the roots of of your vast wisdom on these matters.

This is a very telling opinion of yours and again makes me wonder which side of the fence you are actually on. My gut feeling is that you are not on the same side as me.

Make up your mind Psyclaw. Not long back I was accused of being a fence sitter, now you don't know which side I am. Tell me is it a paling fence or one of barbed wire. I need to know this because if I am guity of being a fence sitter do I use tweezers or a magnet to remove the splinters from the orrifice you believe I talk through. If I am not actually a fence sitter I need to know so I can choose whether to go through or over the fence so as to be on the opposite side to that I am positioned at the moment. I wonder if I will end up on the right side and how do I tell if it is the right side because when I turn around what was once the right side of the fence has become the left side of the fence. Oh dear maybe I am better off sitting on the fence despite the possibility of splinters.

I am guessing that you trust your gut feelings but pray tell do you check first to see if those feelings are all piss and wind?


August 6. 2012 02:34 PM


Ad Astra

You ask are we frightened.  I can only speak for myself, and without reading much of what you have quoted Abbott has said, I can only say, totally scared out of my brain.  Going by the antics in QLD this is a foretaste of what we are in for all over Australia.


Thank you for you links this morning,  I have to say reading "Utherssay" was excellent.   I also noticed on twitter that Ad Astra has written this piece in "Independantaustralia".  Well done Ad.


August 6. 2012 02:51 PM

42 long

  This stuff from the Mad Monk, is straight out of the "right" in the USA. Am I Scared? Yes I am, frankly, because this stuff is not very intelligent. It's not based on fact It is a huge attack on anyone that doesn't "think" like those crazies do. It's very devisive of society and is an attack on those without the means and contacts to get their message out there.
   Free Speech from one who drowns out any opposition. You are a hypocrite Abbott. Defender of liars. Praiser of many who work in devious ways. Peddler of distortion. Your children will want to disown you. That will be your legacy.

42 long

August 6. 2012 03:16 PM


Ad @ 12:32 PM,
thanks for your comment.

(memo to self Refresh and read comments before clicking the Save Comment button)

The whole concept of 'failure' and 'mistakes' has been visited by some wise minds that have shown among other things how 'failure' can be and often is turned into 'success'.

Getting into the blame game for a moment it is a problem with our early education system and methods of testing the must share a reasonable portion of the 'blame'.

I am not sure if I have related the story before of someone I knew who didn't know they were basically as blind as a bat until well into high school. This person was the child of teachers who had it drummed into them that nothing less than top level passes in 'tests' were expected of them. When it came time for their regular eye 'tests' they 'studied' hard by remembering what their siblings read out during their tests and when it was their turn they 'read' the eye chart from memory and 'passed' with flying colours.

When this person finally got found out by a doctor who suspected that something was amiss and chose a different chart they were mortified but later absolutely amazed when finally getting glasses there was a whole new world out there that was more than six inches from their nose.

The absolute need to pass tests, probably even of the NAPLAN type, may be a major detriment to a 'good' education but it is a topic for another day.

Time will tell how big a 'mistake' the PM's proposals on Asylum Seekers is or was. Given the recent impasse reached I don't know what else could have been done except to set up the Houston panel. No matter what the panel comes out with, without careful planning and sure footwork it could very easily turn into another disaster. The PM is on hiding to nothing on this as, no matter what the Greens or the opposition do, the public, quite rightly, expects the government to 'fix it' as it is the government that is theoretically in control.

In a probably vain attempt put a different perspective on my contention that this (and any) government can often be its' own worst enemy I will put it this way:

If the answer is that News Ltd (or the media) is the governments worst enemy are we asking the right question?


August 6. 2012 03:18 PM



Please do not hide behind your view that I am vastly knowledgeable and skilful. That is a weak cop-out.

I am retired and have never worked in any aspect of media nor government. I have no hidden sources of info, nor any "special" skills or strategies for me to use in my comments.

Like you, I do read fairly widely.

My university studies were done part time as a mature aged student. They included the study of logic and perhaps that is am element of my past which I use in blogs .... not consciously .... but certainly that learning was absorbed years ago and it may be now a deep part of my persona ....who knows.

In my writing I am conscious of avoiding ad hominems, although I'm sure some implicit ones do slip through. Note that I have never referred to you as a source of piss and wind.

AA in his latest reply to you picked up on one aspect of your content which I had been nagged by but which I couldn't put into words ie the fact that many of the "mistakes' you listed were in fact not mistakes.

That aspect, together with your arguments downplaying the importance of the media's recalcitrance are in a nutshell the two reasons I took up the pen in response to you.

Here is a question for all swordsters to contemplate.

Had the MSM been fair to the government and listed only true mistakes as mistakes, and conversely listed Abbott's mistakes truthfully, and had the MSM scrutinised, questioned and publicised even 50% of the lies and tripe from Abbott's mob, what do you think the polls would have been saying over the past 2 years and now?

Certainly in regard to the carbon scheme, the election "lie" issue would have had little of the anti JG potency it has. Abbott knows it is not a tax and that it is the precursor and temporary settling-in step to the trading scheme. When has the media analysed this and slapped him down every time he says it.

And regarding Nauru, not one body or source of expertise in the land supports his view that it will have any deterrence value. When has the media analysed this and slapped him down every time he says it.

These two are ongoing and unfair bullets against JG that have been used daily for 2 years.

But even on the minor current issue of Brough, Abbott says that Brough has been "upfront", reciting a purposeful lie. When did the media analyse this and slap him down every time he said it last week.

Had JG been given even a half-fair go by the media, I firmly believe that the polls for the last couple of years would have been fluctuating around the 51-49 mark, either way.


August 6. 2012 04:01 PM

Ad astra

Hi Lyn
BB’s comment is spot on, as usual.

Has Campbell Newman joined the ‘Re-elect Julia Gillard’ team?  He’s certainly giving us a grim picture of how an Abbott government would treat us, and today we had another dose of Abbott’s medicine in his speech on the media to the IPA.  If he were to repeal that part of the Racial Discrimination Act that tripped up Andrew Bolt, can you imagine Bolt after that?

Ross Gittins is his usual forthright self in his article about IR.

BTW, the piece by Shane Watling on The Drum is good reading, with which it is easy to agree, except his last sentence: ”But Wayne Swan and other government figures are just reinforcing how ridiculously out of touch they are with the concerns of most Australians when they tell us that everything is fine.”


Then I noticed that Shane Watling is production manager at plantation timber sawmill Wespine Industries and a member of the Liberal Party.

It’s noteworthy that while Wayne Swan points to the strengths of the Australian economy, he often expresses concern for those ‘doing it tough’, thereby refuting Watling’s accusation that Swan is ‘out of touch’.  If fact, Swan has been criticized for giving ‘mixed messages’ about the economy.  It’s difficult to win with our media!

Ad astra

August 6. 2012 04:01 PM

42 long

Psyclaw, a reasoned argument.( In my view of course).\
  It's silly in the extreme to argue the media's view doesn't change anything. Advertising works pure and simple ( Just that the LNP get theirs free).
  The constant repetition of DIRECT quotes from LNP all day on ABC News 24. You could not pay for. TOO many free kicks ABC.
   The suspension of standing orders 60 plus times during broadcast time. How much FREE advertising was that?
  TIMED so the labour reply would be cut off by the termination of Question Time, so that virtually the unfettered and outrageous claims of the liars would go unchallenged. Clever is it? A straight out abuse of Parliament I call it, and it wouldn't matter which party indulged in it . My view would be the same.
   All the HOO HAH about Thomson. You would think it was the end of the world. A calamity in our midst, ( at the time). Don't hear about it now do you? The dirt has been thrown the damage has been done.
. We have an adversarial system of government, and it is the duty of an opposition to oppose but this mob have harmed the country with their lies and distortions./ Talked a good economy down scared old folks silly. talked value out of businesses. tried to take the duty of the courts unto themselves. ( What A Precedent in THAT one). Very selectively applied though. Muscle man MAL is happy to let the courts deal with his involvement and the NASTY LABOR types who dare to go public ( LIKE THEY did with ASHBY/SLIPPER. Thomson/ Ladies of the night. We will GET those nasty Labor Types just like we did to Bligh. Double standards all the way from the Liars.
   They are "Cocky" because they know they can get away with it.

42 long

August 6. 2012 05:13 PM


@ 2:20 AM I wrote:
Some current examples of the government being its' own worst enemy.

The reports on what Kim Beazely is supposed to have said in private talks. Who leaked them and why?

The leak of recent internal polling. Again who leaked and why?

How does this convert into me saying they were mistakes. Is it because I used the words There are people who are only too ready to overlook any mistakes, stumbles or otherwise ... at the beginning of that comment and that converts the examples into 'mistakes'? If so, please explain the logic.

You write That aspect, together with your arguments downplaying the importance of the media's recalcitrance ...

Does my writing News outlets have always been a powerful means of persuasion, ... downplay the importance of the media's recalcitance or is it something else?

I do not believe that I am downplaying the significance of the media in shaping the perceptions of this government. I am pointing out that some of the perceptions created come from actions of the government itself.

The way some people put it almost every single thing written about this government is a distortion, a lie or springs from some conspiracy theory that all the media gets into huddle every morning to manufacture the latest let's get the government story.

Yes journalists can over egg the pudding, yes jounalists can turn an off the cuff quip into world shattering news but that does not make everything writen a fabrication.

Let's have some historical and contemporary perspective here.

Not everything written or said in the media is true nor is everything written or said untrue. It never has been so and it will never be so.

This is not the only time in history that a government has been pilloried by the press and it is unlikely it will be the last time that a government is ever 'put to the sword' by the press.

People and and governments often 'make their own luck' either good or bad by the the choices they make or their actions. People and governments can choose to make enemies and vilify those enemies if they think it is productive but I question deeply that it is productive to make enemies.

There are probably more than 50 Sades of Grey in the black and white world of newsprint and media reporting and I question the view of some that this is the blackest it has ever been.

If that makes me an apologist for News Ltd or some right wing nut job troll then so be it. In your heart and your head Psyclaw you know that I am none of those things. You also know that there has been an element of projection in the comments on what I have written and that if both eyes and ears were used some would be able to understand that a government just like me and you can be our own worst enemies at times.


August 6. 2012 05:16 PM


psyclaw - your responses as requested.

Here is a question for all swordsters to contemplate.

Had the MSM been fair to the government and listed only true mistakes as mistakes, and conversely listed Abbott's mistakes truthfully, and had the MSM scrutinised, questioned and publicised even 50% of the lies and tripe from Abbott's mob, what do you think the polls would have been saying over the past 2 years and now?
Define a "true" mistake.  Abbott has made mistakes too, however when he does he takes the heat for a day or two, keeps to his theme and moves on.

Certainly in regard to the carbon scheme, the election "lie" issue would have had little of the anti JG potency it has. Abbott knows it is not a tax and that it is the precursor and temporary settling-in step to the trading scheme. When has the media analysed this and slapped him down every time he says it. This one is entirely Gillard's making.  There was one interview where she - I suspect in exasperation - commented that if the interviewer wanted to call it a tax, then ok its a tax before asking to move on.  Of course Abbott knows its not a tax - by legal definition if nothing else.

And regarding Nauru, not one body or source of expertise in the land supports his view that it will have any deterrence value. When has the media analysed this and slapped him down every time he says it.And were was the Minister responsible for rehousing asylum seekers in the media - even writing opinion pieces - suggesting that Nauru was financially irresponsible, had no deterrent effect anyway and 90% of those jailed at Nauru ended up in Australia or New Zealand anyway?

These two are ongoing and unfair bullets against JG that have been used daily for 2 years.

But even on the minor current issue of Brough, Abbott says that Brough has been "upfront", reciting a purposeful lie. When did the media analyse this and slap him down every time he said it last week.
you know as well as I do that there are issues in regard to Brough, Ashby and Slipper that are before a court.  While Abbott can skate through the legal requirements, its far harder for a Government to do so.  Regardless of that, if the ALP have the energy and drive, they could do a really good local campaign against Brough.  The other thing to consider here is are Abbott and Brough's egos small enough to exist in the same place?[/quote]

Had JG been given even a half-fair go by the media, I firmly believe that the polls for the last couple of years would have been fluctuating around the 51-49 mark, either way. [/quote]That's your opinion - my opinion is somewhat different.  There are a number of imponderables that will happen between now and the next Federal Election - for example a lot of Queenslanders are now openly voicing the opinion not to elect Abbott as he will do to Australia what Newman is doing to Queensland.  Will Brough challenge from outside Parliament - it's worked once in recent years and orchestrated by the same party machine that put Brough in the seat?  In short we have no idea of the political landscape next month let alone this time next year - however the government are spending nowhere near enough time proving to the media that there is another side to the story - and that is where DMW is correct.

P.S. DMW - I did like the link.  Thanks.  However I don't want to edit your comments Laughing


August 6. 2012 05:38 PM


Ad astra

I read the Watling article on The Drum, and yes the last sentence looked like it belonged somewhere else until you read he is a member of the liberal party. So a truly disingenuous piece to my mind.

Agree I think Swan should stop mentioning those who are doing it tough, it might be true, and I understand he wants to be honest, but its doing him no favours.

I was out and about yesterday, and for the first time I saw people who are staunch Liberal voters looking a bit squeamish but wanting to say Newman is right to balance the budget. When I am amongst people I always tell them I'm a Labor supporter and so expect me to dissagree, albeit respectfully. This to give them a chance to decide to engage or not with me. Usually I get a few very tentative people on the sidelines trying to sit on the fence not wanting to align themselves with the 'losers' (Labor) and I know that once they were Labour supporters. Now, I am glad to report that people actually piped up and said 'yeah I too am a Labor supporter and I didn't vote for Newman'.......oh the pride I felt, no longer just my partner and I willing to voice our Labor loving intentions! We are sticking our chest out with pride again - it feels very good!

So, keep the faith I can feel the tide turning.


August 6. 2012 05:46 PM

Ad astra

Isn't it good to stick out one's chest in pride at being a Labor supporter and being proud of the Gillard Government's achievements.

Ad astra

August 6. 2012 06:05 PM



"Let's have some historical and contemporary perspective here.

Not everything written or said in the media is true nor is everything written or said untrue. It never has been so and it will never be so."

I'm not going to flog a dead horse any further.

You fail to concede that the MSM throughout JG's PM-ship has been constantly, maliciously, untruthfully, vitriolically, venomously, personally, attacking her in a way never seen before.

The difference to previous MSM campaigns against PMs and governments is purely in the extreme degree to which it has been conducted..

Your attempts to minimise what the MSM have done and continue to do to the PM in an attempt to bring down the government every "tomorrow" by claiming that it has always been this way is a rewrite of history.  Sad and wrong.


August 6. 2012 06:07 PM


Ad it certainly is, though I was always proud. Never been afraid to voice my lefty side.

It was really nice to also see Liberal voters being coy though (I loved it), not their usual cocky selves, ready to tell me how hopeless Labor are. I have several other people I haven't seen since Newman started his tirade of sackings, and they work in the public service, so that should be interesting. Not that I wish them any misfortune I hope they are not part of the cuts. I have hated seeing people who I know used to be quite left leaning suddenly lose their minds and believe all the tripe. I would like to see them get it back again.

Some lost their minds for the most stupid reasons; I don't like Julia's voice, or how she talks (I suspected that just don't like women in power, and that goes for the females I know also, really pathetic reasoning, just parroting the MSM.


August 6. 2012 06:10 PM

42 long

They probably DID vote for Newman but don't want to admit it publicly. You may see more of them as time goes by. May it happen.

42 long

August 6. 2012 06:23 PM



Let's have some historical and contemporary perspective here.

Not everything written or said in the media is true nor is everything written or said untrue. It never has been so and it will never be so

I haven't gotten into this argument, but ths does intrigue me somewhat - though my right brain says I should ignore you.

So, what you are saying is exactly what we have been arguing about - stick to the truth, retract when you get it wrong, then we wont have a problem.

But when just about everything we read these days is opinion being served up as facts. Journo's interviewing journo's for their opinion. The average Joe can't tell the difference. Being constantly served up right wing propaganda meant to sway their voting intention is what I am against.


August 6. 2012 06:31 PM


True 42 long they probably did.

I don't know what Newman is hoping to achieve once the budget is balanced, but he is going to have to peddle real hard to find all these people work. And, construction isn't going to cut the mustard. When you spent your life using a pencil, or a researcher, or a social worker, swapping it for a hard hat doesn't sound very feasible.

But he promised 4% unemployment - so peddle boy, peddle. He told the public service they had nothing to fear.


August 6. 2012 06:36 PM


This is a good read:

Canberra Labor MP Andrew Leigh has hit back at Tony Abbott for promising to repeal a section of the Racial Discrimination Act.

In a major speech today, the Opposition Leader recommitted a Coalition Government to dumping Section 18C which prohibits statements that “offend, insult, humiliate or intimidate” another person or group of persons on the grounds of race or ethnicity.

“A ‘hurt feelings’ test is impossible to comply with while maintaining the fearless pursuit of truth which should be the hallmark of a society such as ours,” Mr Abbott told the Institute of Public Affairs.

Dr Leigh pointed out that Mr Abbott has benefited from a court case about hurt feelings.

Advertisement “In 1999, Tony Abbott sued for defamation, and received $66,000 for damage to his hurt feelings,” Dr Leigh said.

“But when it comes to racial minorities, he wants to repeal their right to sue for hate crime, because he says: ‘a “hurt feelings” test is impossible to comply with while maintaining the fearless pursuit of truth’.

“I can’t help feeling that Mr Abbott’s views on freedom of speech are pretty selective.”

Read more: www.canberratimes.com.au/.../...0120806-23pub.html


August 6. 2012 07:13 PM

Wake Up


Surely by now you must realise that you are defending the indefensible with this one.

Massaging the message and tinkering around the edges does not help your cause, it just shows the futility of your argument. No one is talking about the odd indiscretion here or the occasional lack of judgement by certain sections of the media, what has been pointed out to you over and over again is the blatant and relentless negative campaign that persists in the MSM, regardless of what Gillard, The Greens, The Independents (or anyone else that is not the LNP) does.

I have spent over 25 years in the media and have seen plenty of what you refer to, but what we are seeing now offends the living crap out of me on so many different levels that I can't even begin to tell you........... hence my impatience with troll like remarks.

To cry foul and muddy the waters even further as Abbott did today with his 'gagging the media' mantra whilst shamelessly cuddling up with outspoken billionaire media investors and Andrew Bolt was in my view reprehensible. If that isn't the clearest message to you yet DMW, then I am afraid you are a lost cause bleating happily and obliviously on route to the Abbottoir.

Whilst I appreciate that getting meaningful and factual information about the media via the media is nigh impossible, there are many good information sources available if you want to find them.

To pick just one example is the exhaustive review recently completed by the ACIJ (Australian Centre for Independent Journalism) on the news coverage of the carbon price debate in News Ltd papers. This research showed some extremely disturbing results starting with an overall coverage comparison of 82% negative to 18% positive. Yes, that's almost 5 times more negative coverage than positive coverage of the carbon price debate, a debate I might add that was not even a debatable in the first place. To add insult to injury, 11% of their news and features quoted NO source and 30% of the rest quoted only ONE source which meant not testing claims against the views of any other source. Bluescope Steel was quoted 71 times which was more than the number of times all NGO's and scientists combined were quoted. I could go on but I'm sure you get the picture.

Maybe you are familiar with 'Pen', an organisation dedicated to the freedom of journalists
jailed for reporting the truth, Dr Rosie Scott the VP of 'Pen Sydney' sums it up pretty well.............

"Free speech is the cornerstone of genuine Democracy, but when writers publish disinformation dressed up as fact, lies as truth, slander as objective evaluation and call it free speech, they are devaluing its very essence and betraying all those who fought for it."

Wake Up

August 6. 2012 07:19 PM


So what you are saying Wake Up is we need truth in media legislation.  It still doesn't explain why the current government seems so utterly hopeless at managing the press - giving the LNP a free kick in a 24 hour news cycle where the media is always looking for a "new" angle.

Howard knew how to do it, as does Abbott - why can't the ALP do it?  DMW is saying consistently that the media is not the only reason why the Government can't get their message across.  I still maintain DMW is correct.


August 6. 2012 07:20 PM


thanks for the side step.

Are you at all able to answer any of my questions on how my statements have been misrepresented and turned into words I did not write?

Are you able to conclusively and beyond doubt prove that I am, and have been, down playing the influence of the media?

I am not asking you to concede that the goverment may have even in the tiniest way played a part in creating the atmosphere where the the media is apparently constantly, maliciously, untruthfully, vitriolically, venomously, personally, attacking in a way that apparently has never been seen before.

While you are at it are you able to clarify my understanding of the NDIS funding?


August 6. 2012 07:53 PM



I dissagree if the media (Murdoch) is determined that our next government is to be Liberal - Liberal is what they will be pushing. He has extreme amounts of power and he uses it. I think the NBN might just be one of the reasons he is so against Labor, but I suspect their 'spread the wealth' message has put the wind up them. People who are extremely rich do not want to hear that kind of message - they believe in top down wealth creation, and top down means most of the wealth remains with them.

I think Ad astra is correct in his article, they over emphasise the mistakes and play down any successes, and when there is a lull in the politics they drag out the leadership bull dust. Its so obvious. Then that perpetuates doubt amongst the MP's, they afterall want to keep their jobs, they are as greedy as the next person. So any small fissures within the ALP ranks gets amplified and that middies the waters, what came first the chicken or the egg. I for one believe it started with the MSM.


August 6. 2012 08:06 PM


1)  "Define a "true" mistake."
The premature announcement by JG of the East Timor option before all details were tied up was a true mistake. Interestingly it is rarely referred to now by the MSM.

I note that you didn't ask for an example of any of the many untrue mistakes that are continually thrown up by the media. I'll give you one which I heard being repeated today "the BER was a total failure"

2)"Of course Abbott knows its not a tax"
My point exactly. But he calls it a "great big new tax" every day of the week. Tell me of any occasion when you have seen the MSM take him to task on this lie?

3) "And where was the Minister responsible for rehousing asylum seekers in the media - even writing opinion pieces - suggesting that Nauru was financially irresponsible,"
I've heard Mr Bowen making the case that Nauru won't work many many times. Anyway, what he says or does is besides the point. The point is that all the political journos know the expert views about Nauru being an ineffective option. When did you last (ever?) see a journo pressing this point with Abbott?

4)"you know as well as I do that there are issues in regard to Brough, Ashby and Slipper that are before a court."
What in the name of Dog Albitey has this got to do with what I said about Abbott!!! He stated all over the media last week that Brough "had been totally upfront with regard to the Ashby matter".

Yet the fact is, Brough attacked Samantha Maiden, the one who asked him the very first question about Ashby, with a refusal to answer that "nonsense question".

And from that day on he has admitted various involvements in the matter one by one, only after physical evidence appeared proving those contacts.

How many journos have you seen confronting Abbott about this untruth which he presented to the media many times each day, all last week after Brough had been preselected?

5) "I (quoting me, Psyclaw) firmly believe that the polls for the last couple of years would have been fluctuating around the 51-49 mark, either way." That's your opinion - my (2353's) opinion is somewhat different.

Well what is your "somewhat different" opinion?

Presumably, since your's is claimed to be different to mine, then you believe the big gap would still have been / be a big gap even if the MSM had treated JG fairly and even if the MSM had given due scrutiny to Abbott's crap over the past 2 years.

There is only one conclusion that can logically be drawn from that view of yours, namely that on merit and insulated from any MSM influence, in your opinion Abbott and his team are objectively doing much better than the JG government. Such little faith in the party you claim to support is interesting to say the least.

6) "The media can also give the LNP a hard time - look at how NewsCorp and Fairfax are fighting between themselves to heap the greatest amount of criticism on Newman."
This last quote of yours comes from your first post supporting DMW.

Now here we are arguing about whether or not the media has been incredibly unfair to the government and to JG in particular every day, with malice and venom, over a 2 year period, and the best you can come up with to argue that the media is indeed fair and balanced and objective, is to state that in the past 3 months, News and Fairfax "are fighting between themselves to heap the greatest amount of criticism" on a state premier.

Now that's about the biggest white flag I've ever seen waved.


August 6. 2012 08:17 PM


Psyclaw and others...There was no more you could say to clarify your points to both 2353 and DMW. I hate to say it, as Wixxy says..I told you so! I kid you not, the beasts of the field have a greater capacity to logically reason their situation and go about their business than many right-wing voters.
But, well argued anyway.


August 6. 2012 08:22 PM



No sidestep.

Just abiding by some of the the wise maxims I know and like ..... (flogging a dead horse; belting head on brick wall; none so blind.....; can take a horse to water....; leopards and spots; discretion and valour; and pearls and swine)

As to the NDIS, the PC recommended that the feds fund it nationally, but that states' current disability funding come back to the feds to be put into the national funding pool. This draw back from states will be a relatively small portion of the total national expenditure.


August 6. 2012 08:30 PM



" DMW is saying consistently that the media is not the only reason why the Government can't get their message across.  I still maintain DMW is correct."

This is not what DMW is arguing!

DMW is arguing that the MSM is no different now than it has been for decades. He claims that like in the past the MSM is merely "campaigning against the government" as is the right of media proprietors.

He denies the fact that the degree and extent of criticism by the MSM of JG and the government is far more extreme than in years gone by.




August 6. 2012 08:42 PM


There was one interview where she - I suspect in exasperation - commented that if the interviewer wanted to call it a tax, then ok its a tax before asking to move on.

But that's not what she actually said, 2353. She told the interviewer that if they wanted to call it a tax, they could, but that it wasn't a tax, it was a price on carbon emissions. She would have fared better telling the cat.

It was like watching an episode of Family Guy, when the dad is corrected, stares ahead, blinks two or three times, and carries on spruiking his lie.

However, deliberate misquoting, straight out lying and distortions of what has been said are rife by both the msm and the opposition. They grab it and run with it endlessly.

And it's very difficult to correct without looking like a whinger and/or shifty and getting not just a correction, but having the correction published quickly and prominently.

And were was the Minister responsible for rehousing asylum seekers in the media - even writing opinion pieces - suggesting that Nauru was financially irresponsible, had no deterrent effect anyway and 90% of those jailed at Nauru ended up in Australia or New Zealand anyway?

Not reported by a media uninterested in government response or distorted by the same media ala PvO's spin on Gillard staring down Baillieu and O'Farrell.

Or the same old "Tony Abbott says blah, blah, blah..." or "The opposition says wah, wah, wah....."

Writing opinion pieces is fine, but you have to get them published.

And then there's the cases of a Minister or the PM announcing an important piece of legislation whose announcement is cut off mid sentence to broadcast a half hour spin piece on the Liars Party's latest 3 word slogan or Liealot stunt.

The hysterical attacks on Windsor, Oakeshott and Bob Brown are also a case in point.

.......if the ALP have the energy and drive, they could do a really good local campaign against Brough.

I'm sure they could, 2353, but it would have to be very carefully crafted and could easily backfire as they learned to their cost during the Qld elections with the campaign against Can't Do.

And @7.19pm, getting constant free kicks as both Howard and Liealot have enjoyed pretty much constantly no matter how inept, incompetent, corrupt and lazy they are, should answer that question.

Whereas the government's lot is just getting kicked. Even when the  msm can't find a chink in a government good news story, it's spun as astonishing news that they got something right, damned with faint praise.

And then we're reminded of the terrible incompetence, ineptness and torpor of a government led by an inept, incompetent accident prone PM who is portrayed as a liar, a backstabber covered in St Kevin's blood, who never does anything at all right, IF she does anything.

But gee whiz, I just can't unnerstan' why they can't get the message out.

LIR @6.23pm, precisely.

Wake Up @7.13pm, couldn't agree more. Well said.  


August 6. 2012 08:42 PM

Wake Up

In desperation the animals began appealing to the two horses which drew the van to stop. "Comrades, comrades!" they shouted. "Don't take your own brother to his death! "
But the stupid brutes, too ignorant to realise what was happening, merely set back their ears and quickened their pace.

Wake Up

August 6. 2012 08:53 PM


Some of you may consider my comments on the right-wingers cruel and unkind. I base my considerations on the fact that all (without exception) the lefties I know, who can and do enjoy logical, even heated debate on politics, have at their "elbow" a solid library of well thumbed tomes on a large variety of subjects both philosophic and pragmatic. These books are a necessity for quiet reflection and studious research.
In my experience, there seems to be decidedly less consideration given to studious research by the right side of political debate. Indeed, a good many of the points put forward by such are no more than tedious repetitions of generic propaganda put out by "head office".
The accumulation of both learned and experienced knowledge must gel and morph over many years of life lived...THAT is the X factor...that "ageing" of those pearls of wisdom both read and lived...both "the book and the look", if I can use that analogy are requisite for a really, REALLY good debate and conversation....It seems to me either one or the other is somehow lacking whenever I witness the right-wing struggling to put a reasoned point across.
I personally beleive it stems from laziness and a looking for a bluff or the easy way out.  


August 6. 2012 09:03 PM


Completely off topic..If the Mars buggy finds the residue of life on the planet, I'd say it's a case of ; "Goodbye Jesus..it was nice to know you!"


August 6. 2012 09:10 PM

42 long

I think I have worked out how to tell when Can do is lying. His lips move.

42 long

August 6. 2012 10:41 PM


On the 4th I commented that Murdoch was back interferring in UK politics, by tweeting Boris would make a good PM and that. Cameron had not worked out. The UK Mirror is now reporting that Tories want a change in leader.
Murdoch papers areonly going to increase their attacks on the Gillard govt until such time they can instal Abbott.  And Abbott's speech today at the IPA is only a small insight of the power that Murdoch insists he have


August 6. 2012 10:47 PM

Truth Seeker

Just watched QandA, and despite Tony Jones's efforts saw King Camp Bell and Brandis get an absolute flogging.
The truth of Costello's audit fudging and the bloody minded LNP cuts revealed for the Bullshit that they are.
One questioner asked if Newmans style could be a taste of what to expect if Abbott gets into government, and despite Brandis's efforts to state otherwise, the overwhelming reaction from the tweets and the audience indicated that many are asking the same question.
Katie Noonan finished with a beautiful song.

Worth watching for a change.


Truth Seeker

August 6. 2012 10:59 PM


once again you have misinterpreted and/or misrepresented what I have been arguing and 2353 is closer to the mark than you.

My original comment was over one part News outlets have become a powerful means of persuasion ... and I proposed that news outlets have always been powerful persuaders.

No one has made a case here to say any different. I will happily read any comment that proves me wrong on this point and take it on board. I will likely change my mind if any of you can prove that this a recent phenonomen particularly if it is as recent as the day that Ms Gillard became Prime Minister.

I the added that there have been campaigning editors, owners and journalists since shortly after the printing press was invented. Again no one has proven me wrong on this. I and many others would very sceptical of any who attempted to make a case that this has only occurred since Ms Gillard became PM.

To finish off I stated that News Ltd is not Labor's biggest enemy it is moor (sic) likely that the current government is its' own worst enemy.

Nowhere in that comment did I defend News Ltd or state that I approved of, liked or agreed with any and/or all of what has been written or spoken by News Ltd. or any other journalists.

Some chose to jump to the delusion that me writing that the government is its' own worst enemy was an endorsement of all of the vendetta journalism that has been doing the rounds.

Those of you who wish to believe that News Ltd. in particular and the media in general are the source of ALL of Labor's woes good on you, be happy with that delusion it will serve you and the government you profess to love so extraordanarily well. Well it might serve them well in some parallel universe.

There are many reasons that the government is failing to get its' message out and the media obviously plays a very big part in that as it is the media that is the main medium for the message.

Any of you that are able to explain how News Ltd. in particular and the media in general are the ONLY reason for ALL of the governments problems go ahead, do it, I will happily read and digest your argument and if you can prove the case I will be the first to applaud you.

To those who wish to misinterpret and/or distort what I proposed good on you, but ask yourself are you doing what you say the media is always doing to the government?


August 6. 2012 11:10 PM



"Any of you that are able to explain how News Ltd. in particular and the media in general are the ONLY reason for ALL of the governments problems go ahead"

Where on earth did this challenge come from? I have not seen any TPS comment arguing such a ridiculous proposition that the media is 100% responsible for the government's unpopularity.

Here's one from me to you. I challenge you to prove that the soil on Mars does not contain 7.4261% carbon.

This challenge is about as sensible as yours, and it too is vis a vis nothing in particular .... just a few silly words of bluff.


August 6. 2012 11:24 PM


you know where it comes from.

And you have not been able to explain the leaps of logic that you have taken to misrepresent and distort what I have written.

You use the cop out of not flogging a dead horse as a cover for not explaining how you jumped to some of the delusions that you have.


August 6. 2012 11:33 PM


Dearly Beloved (and that is not a mere figure of speech for all those whom I do mean, and I'm not hypocrite enough to include those I don't, and I'm sure you can all tell which from what):

I am quite touched, (no double entendre entendred) by all my wellwishers, it says a lot about Lefties that we care about each other, just the way that Crapsmell Newman doesn't. What a world we could make if it were free of RELiGION most of all! Because it is the great driver of hatred and division. It is in a word EVIL.

I am in hospital, yes, been here since 8AM, no see urologist at all so far, so not till tomorrow now, supposed surgery date but I doubt it, bloody urine in my catheter bag, kidney?/back pain, feeling a bit sick possibly from i/v antibiotics; sort of rearguard action I fear, wish I'd had antibiotic cover ever since the original bladder puncture instead of a fortnight later . . . As I told Ad astra indeed, anticipating myself the likely and eventual bladder infection that my urologist didn't. . . Though I always caution against premature antibiotic use, but mine plainly wouldn't have been, iyswim.

One thing though, it makes me REALLY bitchy, I bid fair to be the most pungently offensive (to the the Right and its bumboy the ABC) of all the Tweeps on Twitter, as Lyn Tweety is the sweetest and most effective of all there. The Beast and the Beauty. (As she is here on TPS indeed, equal-1st with Ad astra of course.) And on Twitter, Ad astra's work is much retweeted by the best of bloggers and tweeps, Independent Australia is the latest and maybe greatest of all examples: https://twitter.com/davrosz

It is an ambition of mine to work to bring these wonderful commentators REALLY together in concerted action to see that Abbortt and his cronies are brought low. I reckon TPS is the best place to summon them, but I don't mean to create competition or internecine jealousies. Everyone must feel happy and join in.

Just had my second I/v antibiotic, gee I hope it works.

Don't have the energy to write a long post, Twitter lets me say really unpleasant things to really unpleasant people really fast without much effort. I'll keep you posted of course but right now I'm not up to much. Goodnight Comrades, sweet dreams and thanks again for your well wishes.  



August 7. 2012 12:14 AM


OK I'll admit it I was absolutely wrong and totally off the mark.

Swanny channeling Sprignsteen has given Labor a 5 point lift in the polls.

It take it all back Swanny you were spot on.


August 7. 2012 01:55 AM



We'll try again. Evidently I am (unconsciously) very patient tonight.

Who, ie what commenter, ie what poster, ie what correspondent, ie what writer, ie what contributor, ie what person on TPS has argued that "the media in general are the ONLY reason for ALL of the governments problems"

These are your words. You wrote them. On what basis? It was you who emphasised in upper case the words "only" and "all". What thought bubble put them onto your keyboard?

It is ingenuous and dishonest to say blandly "you know where it comes from". That is another cop-out. Put up!


August 7. 2012 07:16 AM


Today’s Links

The media in the middle, Ad Astra, Independent Australia
intent on spreading widely its cancerous message about PM Gillard and her Government, absorbed with metastasizingto every part of the electorate. Truth is irrelevant — bringing PM Gillard and her Government down is all that counts. The Murdoch media now reflects the strategies employed by Fox News in the US – an around-the-clock, partisan assault on public opinion – and the Fairfax media, and to some extent the ABC, is following suit. It is subversive and dangerous.

And, of course, much of what the Queensland premier is now doing was never mentioned as part of his agenda before he stormed into office with a huge majority. But that’s no matter, because he has been able to justify the slash and burn by resorting to the old trick of saying ‘OMG, I never knew the budget was in such bad shape’.

#82 Parody of journalism (3) “It’s a lie” if a News Corporation says so!, Uthers Say
the same rules that News Ltd journalists use to label what they see as “lies” were applied to all the hyperventilating over the last two years to the stories about the imminent return of Kevin Rudd to the prime ministership, one could anticipate a bountiful harvest of “lies”.

The Fair Work Act Works, Manoj Dias-Abey, New Matilda
The Labor government is expected to release its response to the recommendations in the report in the coming weeks after it has had an opportunity to undertake further consultation with stakeholders. Although both employer and employee parties will be privately happy about the outcome of the review, expect to see the parties continue to jockey for position in an attempt to

Abbott announces plans to amend RDA, The Tracker
If it’s all right for (former Fairfax journalist) David Marr to upset conservative Christians, why is it not all right for Bolt to upset activist Aborigines. “I think there’s a place for reasoned argument … but not one that seeks to marginalise one section of the community from the other,” he told Sky News.

En Passant #8: Climate Change, Sceptics & Conspiracy Theories!, Defnarf
He said that while it sounded somewhat strange there ‘are significant things going on in Australia that people are waking up to!’ With it’s wierdo views, a patron such as Alan Jones and Andrew Bolt as an adviser’ the group sounds like just another bunch of ultra-conservative, free-marketeering conspiracy theorists more intent on political manipulation of the gullible than in advancing the scientific debate.

NSW Premier BarryOFarrell ‘s MPs run up $1m party bill , Darin Sullivan, The Left Hack
Credit card statements obtained by the State opposition show ministers and their staff have spent almost $1 million on airfares, hotels, food and laundry in the year since the O’Farrell government came to office.

Foreign-owned land register ‘improves transparency’, David Twomey, Eco News
Dr Emerson earlier pointed to a “negligible” 0.1 per cent rise in the level of foreign ownership of Australian agricultural land between 1984 and 2010. However, Mr Truss dismissed the Australian Bureau of Statistics data quoted by Dr Emerson as “fatally flawed”.

Making Up Facts, Stephen Koukoulas, Market Economics
Shane Watling, a member of the Liberal Party and production manager at Wespine Industries, had an article published by the ABC on its “unleashed” section today.
I am not aware of any industry, in any state at any time that has seen a 30% fall in consumer demand. Looks like another made up fact from Mr Watling.

Scary stuff that a someone would write this stuff, more scary that the ABC would publish it.

Gay marriage rights: 4 votes, Min, Café Whispers
Mr. Murphy’s statement clearly refers to the definition of a marriage as introduced by the former Howard government as being between person of the opposite gender, however I prefer this definition as expressed by Chinese philosopher Lao Tzu: “Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.”

Must try harder, Part 2, John Quiggin
It appears to be beyond the realm of political possibility to change this, but a government facing a supposed financial crisis, and looking for luxury items to cut, could start with land tax exemptions. As you might expect, Queensland has both a high threshold ($600 000) and a low rate (1 per cent increasing gradually).

Swan was advised to call a financial system inquiry. He hasn't. So it's up to Hockey, Peter Martin
Two years to the month since Wayne Swan was urged strongly in then secret Treasury advice to commission a new Wallis-style inquiry into the financial system one of the members of the original landmark Wallis inquiry has broken cover and a labelled a new one long overdue

If Kevin Rudd is the answer, what is the question-, Ian Harris, The Blowfly
In order to distract himself from the misleading statements and lies of Tony Abbott, the superciliousness of George Brandis , the light-weight and often-repeated clichés of Joe Hockey, the piercing shrill of Eric Abetz, the repeated propaganda of Greg Hunt and the totally annoying demeanor of Christopher Pyne yours truly turned his brain cell to this task.

RED-FACED: Fairfax Enviro-Editor Ben Cubby shamed after repeating anti-Semitic climate group’s false claims, Vex News
CUBBY IN THE HOUSE Apparently slightly less unhinged than the average eco-reporter, Sydney sources had insisted, Ben Cubby has nonetheless stumbled into an unfortunate and embarrassing incident where he falsely asserted that nationally-syndicated Herald Sun columnist Andrew Bolt was an “adviser” to a climate-conspiracist group

Packer: gambling kingpin shows how to build a brand, James Thomson, The Power Index
Packer’s multiple appearances in the last week were, in the main, very much warranted. In the space of a few days Packer won approval for a major redevelopment of his casino in Perth (formerly known as Burswood, now to be called Crown Perth), received approval to build a casino in Sydney’s giant Barangaroo project and launched a $500 million

Today’s Front Pages
Australia Newspaper Front Pages for 7 August 2012


August 7. 2012 07:25 AM

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LYN'S DAILY LINKS updated: www.thepoliticalsword.com/.../...-DAILY-LINKS.aspx

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August 7. 2012 08:02 AM



I did think twice about posting anything here as those that can't see the wood for the trees will somehow blame me with the margin of error for the poll (or some other crap) in the above link - it seems to be the fashion of those who don't like the particular message.

Bottom line on the media argument above is this.  It is ok to blame whoever you like for the ALP's current poll ratings (and even with a 5% lift (which is only a couple of percent above the margin of error - so some small movement has occurred but it's not a trend yet), the LNP would win power at a federal election in a canter.  As demonstrated in WA, Vic, NSW and now Qld; that is not a desirable outcome.

The ALP is, you would hope, aware of the perception of bias towards the LNP in the media.  Assuming there is a bias there (and the evidence would suggest it is), they have significant resources available to deal with that both at a political (ALP "Corporate") and governmental level (the marketing and advisory levels within the various departments) to formulate a strategy, followed by a plan to deal with it.  They haven't as there has been no change in the medias perceived bias since early 2008.  

Until the ALP and the Government devise and implement a plan to cope with the reality that they don't get a fair run in the media - they will go down badly at the next election.  Acknowledging they have a problem is the first step and judging on the vitriol heaped on some that suggest the ALP is part of the problem on this and other blogs, that is yet to happen.

ALP "Leaders" commentating in public on interal ALP politics and/or leadership speculation is also self defeating and will in the end erode any confidence left in the ALP.  It is a good way to ensure that the ALP spends a long time in opposition.

Personally I would like to see Gillard suggest the media is biased - give a couple of examples from NewsCorp, Fairfax and the electronic media groups - and legislate something similar to Canada's truth in media laws.  With the scorn that has been placed on Windsor and Oakeshott - they would probably be quite receptive!  It won't do anything for her poll ratings for a while - but there isn't much there to lose anyway.


August 7. 2012 08:40 AM


DAM DAM DAM and #*ck it all I just lost another big early-morning pre-op post, well the short news is I'm due for sugery this morning. Now I've lost my enthusiasm for even trying to write it again, Dam I wish there was autosave on this blog!

When I've written something and lost it it is so gone, I can't even remember most of it.

Anyway I'm quite scared, not of survival but of outcome, I've had this catheter up me for nearly 3 weeks, will my urethra ever remember how to contain my pee? How much pain and blood, clots and barb-wire peeing and for how long? My urine was still somewhat bloody yesty, but it's nice pale yellow now, please Dog let it all work out OK this time. And may my kidneys still be OK, they were before this horrible #*ckup but I've had a bladder infection for a while now, Urgh.

I didn't see my urologist/surgeon at all yesty, nor a continence nurse although I asked several times for one, due to my bloody urine, I was supposed to have sugery (the hospital's official spelling) at 4 this arvo, but the sourpuss nurse last night grabbed my water and informed me that it would be this AM, so I'm fasting and thirsty now.

One nice Scottish nurse (who JUST THAT MOMENT as I wrote that CAME IN and I gave her a Brucie Bilby book, just then!), well last night I made some joke to her and she said Good you've got a sense of humour and I said (remember this is a Catholic hospital I'm in) I said, Look I'm not a God botherer but if if I were I'd think that humour was the one saving grace Coole gave us to make up for all the horror and injustice. The nurse instantly went conspiratorial, she sort of looked around and said sotto voce in Scottish, She said [i]My father taught me Never believe in something you can't see, I don't believe in God either but I wouldn't dare mention it to any of the staff here!

She more than made up for the sourpuss nurse last night before her who snatched my water and my saved bit of custard and told me quite nastily I was fasting and that my sugery (official hospital spelling) was to be this morning not this arvo as planned.

Gee I just wrote that before didn't I. Medication messes my mind.

My anaesthetist-to-be just came in, very explanatory, and at last too my urologist/surgeon, I feel just a trace reassured now, thank Dog. He reckons it'll all be alright in the end.

Eight o'clock. Started first draft at six, sugery at ten, better have a shower now (and resist the urge to drink the bath water.)

Dunno when I be back from LaLa Land. All the best Comrades. Keep your peckers up! Smile


August 7. 2012 08:44 AM


To get Cool you go ( then H then ) but no gaps. I just found it by accident. I'll explain some other time.  


August 7. 2012 08:54 AM


Sabra Lane commented on the Newspoll result. She gave four reasons.

1) JG on holidays
2) The Olympics
3) Labor has nowhere to go but upwards
4) JG convinced 5 states to support the NDIS trial

No-one really knows why poll results are what they are, but here are some of my speculative  explanations.

1) Abbott's foot-in-mouth in China
2) Abbott's confused foreign investment "policy" explanations when he returned home.
3) Disinterest by media in fluoro vest daily frolics in favour of Olympic coverage
4) Waning interest in the "we'll all be rooned" beat-ups by Abbott
5) Carbon "tax" lived experience not so bad
6) Preselection of conspirator Brough
7) Last weekend's media chatter about an imminent Abbott demise, possibly in favour of JBishop
8) Warren Truss's pathetic performance on Insiders
9) Barnaby Joyce's ridiculosity late last week
10)Millions of voters have begun to visit TPS and are now wising up

Given the multitude of possible reasons for the poll shift it is interesting that 3 out of 4 given by Lane say that it is not to any credit of the government.

And zero out of her 4 explanations reflect on any deficit in Abbott's or the Colonition's performance.

How does this coverage on the ABC merely reflect the "right of proprietors to campaign against the government, as they've aways done"?


August 7. 2012 09:01 AM


Poll result - national disgust at Newman?  It'll get worse for them yet if that is the case.


August 7. 2012 09:09 AM

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We all send you every good wish for your surgery today.

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August 7. 2012 09:34 AM

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Hi Lyn
Thank you again for your links and for placing at the top The media in the middle on the Independent Australia website.  At the invitation of IA’s editor David Donovan, I agreed to the re-posting of the current piece on TPS on Independent Australia.  He dressed it up magnificently with several relevant YouTube clips.  David tells me it has had a good reception and many hits.  To date there are 12 comments, all positive.  

This is an example of how those of us in the Fifth Estate can collaborate and multiply the penetration of what we write.  

If any of our visitors haven’t seen the IA version of The media in the middle, they would enjoy playing the YouTube clips that illustrate in vision what the words say, and more.


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August 7. 2012 10:03 AM

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We can rely on ABC’s Sabra Lane to paint a dismal picture for PM Gillard and Labor, no matter what Newspoll shows.  Her comment this morning on AM shows how well she has learned from the Dennis Shanahan School of Poll Interpretation how to discount any change in Labor’s favour.

When the transcript is available, I will post the link so you can see her negativity in all its ugliness.  She even predicted how Tony Abbott would react to the speech Julia Gillard is scheduled to give this morning on the subject of electricity prices.  

Sabra might as well be an Abbott media adviser, or part of the News Limited team. Why is she working for the ABC?  Or should I call it the ‘Taxpayer’s Broadcasting Arm' of the Murdoch Empire.

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August 7. 2012 10:21 AM

42 long

Luck ans skill be with you TT.. It IS a bummer to lose a post. So hard to re-do it. I hardly regard mine as being worth redoing.
  Poll figures. We shouldn't attach too much but they are out there and the amount is outside the normal margin for error.
  Abbott is skating on thinner ice than Gillard and relies on perceptions being maintained and re-inforced. Thinkers know where we are headed with this lot and it iS concerning. MORE than that it must not happen. It's just too risky
   Nice to hear real sense from Attenborough this morning re climate and the Scientific Method. What a gift that man has been to civilisation. My wife and I are going to see his show soon. Truth is atranger than fiction.
  Mars landing... What an amazing demonstration of the development of technology. Only a bit over 100 years since man's first powered flight.

42 long

August 7. 2012 10:27 AM

Ad astra

Here is the link to the Sabra Lane piece on AM this morning:  Here’s a taste of her style: http://www.abc.net.au/am/content/2012/s3562051.htm

”SABRA LANE: Well Tony the primary vote is up five points from a low of 28 per cent in the last poll taken a fortnight ago. So now the figure is 33 points, that's up five points. The poll's margin of error is 3 per cent, so that's a big jump, but really it hasn't translated too much of an impact on the party's two-party preferred figure. Labor still faces an electoral wipe out at 46 per cent compared to 54 for the Coalition. 

So in those terms the jump makes little difference but the bounce might give the Prime Minister a psychological boost amid all this chatter about the leadership.”

You can decide if you have the stomach to look at the rest.

Ad astra

August 7. 2012 10:53 AM


I will not take the same approach as you. When I challenge you to put up you dodge and weave that is your right.

It comes from the same place that allows commenters to take a possibility that the government is its' own worst enemy and turn into a defence by me of all of the critical and or offensive things written or said about the PM and the government and into a defence of News Ltd. and/or the media in general.

It comes from the same place that allows commenters to turn an example of me picking a point in time (40 years ago) as a time when there was a some media agitation against a government into me claiming that the media had been like it is now for the last forty years.

It comes from the same place that allows some commenters to call me things like a right wing nut job News Ltd. loving troll.

It comes from the same place that allows some to misinterpret and misrepresent what I wrote with impunity yet requires me to defend and justify, near as damn it, every syllable that I have written.

It comes from the same place that in the discussion around the NDIS allows you to turn the words 'current spending' into something meaning 'new spending'.

I will not bother asking you or anyone else to put up because it would be an absolute waste of time.

In case anyone should think that any of the above applies to everybody else that comments here it does not. There have been some who have commented that I have not responded to but I have read and taken note of your thoughts.


August 7. 2012 10:55 AM



By the sound of it you want absolute proof, you don't even get that in science. Its all about perception and everybody's perception is different. People who write for a living, particularly journo's and editors, and Murdoch, spend vasts amounts of time and effort, and money, finding out, and perfecting, just how to change opinion in as subtle a way as possible. So, I think, they start out cautiously, and become more and more bold. They pull their head in slightly if they get a big backlash (though Murdock has many tabloids where he puts the strong message out and it rarely changes. After the backlash they just go out again and slowly but surely even the stronger messages start getting accepted.

I think Ad had something like that in his Goebels article.


August 7. 2012 11:00 AM


Ad Astra 10.27
That part of the transcript is enough, I feel.
There was a piece about the ABC at Cafe Whispers a while back & I put my bit in, saying I thought it was beyond redemption & that Abbott would probably flog it off. But it occurs to me that the place is off to a flying start in the stakes to become a genuine taxpayer funded mouthpiece for the (Abbott) government.
I'll try not to think about that again.


August 7. 2012 11:03 AM


Good Morning Ad and Everybody

Congratulations Ad Astra on your decision to post your article on Independent Australia.

Attracting a different demographic can only be of benefit. I have noticed the bloggers are becoming more united than ever before. There are a few sharing their articles between blogs, eg Peter Wicks, Alex Schlotzer come to mind.

Sabra Lane has an awful mannerism and approach.


Bushfire Bill
Posted Tuesday, August 7, 2012 at 10:16 am
Just read a bit of Abbott’s speech to the IPA. Thanks for the link. I really question people who support unfettered free speech without pointing out that with rights come responsibilities. Note that Abbott doesn’t mention the word responsibility once.

Polls suddenly don't seem as important to our daily new organizations when they're in favour of Gillard

Labor pounces back in latest poll
On a two-party preferred basis the Coalition still has a sizeable lead on Labor at 54 per cent to 46 per cent. But in continued signs that the electorate has not warmed to Tony Abbott, the Opposition Leader is only just ahead of Ms Gillard as preferred prime minister (38 to 36 per cent) - while 26 per cent of those polled say they are ''uncommitted''
Ms Gillard - who will give a speech today taking on state governments over rising power costs - has been celebrating more than the poll results this morning.

How dodgy forecasts inflate your energy bill
If any further evidence were needed to demonstrate how the power companies, both state-owned and private, have been foisting unnecessary price hikes on their customers, it can be found in the industry's own energy forecasts.

Carbon tax inflation fears yet to materialise  Peter Martin August 07, 2012
TONY Abbott said its impact on the cost of living would be ''almost unimaginable''. Joe Hockey said it would ''drive up the price of everything''. Nationals Senate leader Barnaby Joyce said it would force working mothers to pay ''over $100 for a roast''

Newman Govt ‘a sham'
NEW Premier Campbell Newman has broken a fundamental promise given on election night that his government would not abuse the privilege handed it by its shattering majority

Campbell Newman's support in Ashgrove slips 9 percentage points
Support for Campbell Newman in Ashgrove has slumped with the Premier’s primary vote decreasing by 9 percentage points since the March election.

Courthouses could be closed
THERE have been reports that 30 regional courthouses will be closed as part of Queensland Premier Campbell Newman's cost-cutting measures, and the State Government has not ruled out shutting down the courthouses on the Southern Downs.

"Predictably, Tony Abbott has chosen the populist path - sucking up to the media barons in search of a political... http://fb.me/25gdriXII

National Times‏
Online Political Editor @telester looks at the issues PM Gillard faces on her first day back from leave http://bit.ly/MZnPog

Abbott's race move draws criticism Ross Peake
''In 1999, Tony Abbott sued for defamation, and received $66,000 for damage to his hurt feelings,'' Dr Leigh said.

''But when it comes to racial minorities, he wants to repeal their right to sue for hate crime.

PM's electricity showdown with states looms
Julia Gillard will tell the Energy Policy Institute today that New South Wales and other states have increased revenue from power generators at the expense of families.

NSW Energy Minister Chris Hartcher has hit back, saying the carbon tax is the single biggest factor behind recent rises.

"If the Prime Minister wants to help battling families ... then the remedy is in her hands - repeal the carbon tax," Mr Hartcher said.

Gillard blames states for power price hike
She says network charges are responsible for half of the extra costs being added to bills and says the rises will hurt the economy if they continue.

"People are paying more for the so-called poles and wires - not to produce electricity but just to move it around the system," she says.

Queensland Labor review finds Anna Bligh flawless and its campaign perfect #qldpol http://bit.ly/OIrUvI

Top ABC jobs up for grabs
SENIOR ABC news executives will have to reapply for their jobs as the broadcaster undergoes an organisational transformation for multi-platform digital broadcasting.

The Daily Telegraph‏
Labor enjoys small boost in polls: FEDERAL Labor's primary vote has climbed five points to 33 per cent in the la... http://bit.ly/Q6fpGE

Bernard Keane‏
Important piece from @lenoretaylor - Coalition planning to further degrade its ludicrous Direct Action plan: http://is.gd/mCzVDy

Chris Johnson‏   Michelle Grattan
Would Abbott announce this at his annual indigenous community press stop: www.theage.com.au/.../...acked-20120806-23q8a.html Hooking in city racists, part of the game.

Pamela‏  Tim Colebatch
UNFORTUNATE, NOT EVERYBODY THINKS THIS WAY !! Swan's reforms truly are music to the ears of working class www.theage.com.au/.../...class-20120806-23q4g.html via @theage

Australian News‏@LatestAusNews
Abbott brushes off Labor's poll jump (AAP): Opposition Leader Tony Abbott has brushed off the l... http://yhoo.it/RutPpB #ausnews #uavaus


August 7. 2012 11:33 AM


Hi LadyInRed,
I am proving to be a living example of how we can be our worst enemies.

Yes, in frustration I went off the deep end and demanded absolute proof. No, I don't really need or want it.

Yes, I have been getting quite a few lessons over the last few days about perception and misperception and the real question about it is, will I learn? Hmm, brings to mind something about old dogs but I have a preference for cats as you would have noticed.

Obviously I do not have the skills and experience to use those subtle techniques of moving opinion one way or the other. (gees maybe I should practice and get a job at News Ltd. naaah even I have some morals Tong)

Don't tell anyone else, but on this topic I am standing on a bridge and watching the water go under it and no I am not thinking of jumping off the bridge.


August 7. 2012 11:35 AM


Just read the Lenore Taylor piece on carbon storage. A rolled gold example of coalition strategy to be sure. Promise anything, nothing matters but getting back into their rightful place. Leave the mess for someone else, then complain about the cost of the remedial work, which NEVER happens when they're in government does it so you should always avoid these cost by voting for them.


August 7. 2012 11:39 AM


TT, fingers crossed etc for the success of this latest op and the fervent hope that the pain buggers off to afflict someone worthy of copping it.

I'll let you choose your favoured recipients. Smile

Personally I would like to see Gillard suggest the media is biased - give a couple of examples from NewsCorp, Fairfax and the electronic media groups - and legislate something similar to Canada's truth in media laws.  With the scorn that has been placed on Windsor and Oakeshott - they would probably be quite receptive!  It won't do anything for her poll ratings for a while - but there isn't much there to lose anyway.

2353, it would be wonderful if Gillard could indeed make a statement of that nature, but she would be crucified if she made it publicly.

The hysterical spin that would emanate from both the msm and the Liars Party would ensure that she and the government would be painted as sooky whingers who can't take "honest" criticism.

Unfortunately, the government and the PM are in a cleft stick wrt to enunciating media bias, because a very successful campaign has been run against them by the msm.

The time to have put a stop to it was during the stimulus program and in particular when the msm and the Liars were spruiking their lies about waste and spending like drunken sailors.

I blame Kevin Rudd completely for that. Had he come out fighting and given the msm and the Liars a decent savaging then, I think we would have a very different media landscape now.

Had he also taken a yard broom to the ABC from day 1, the national broadcaster may not now resemble the "newsroom" at Foxtel.

Had he come out swinging in defence of Peter Garrett and his management of HIP, we might see a very different media landscape today.

By remaining silent and removing Garrett, he sent a clear message that he agreed with the gutless opposition that Garrett was useless and responsible for the four deaths and the fires that occurred.

Had Rudd acted as he should have, he would probably still be PM, probably with a clear majority.

And there we have another mistake. Instead of the tap on the shoulder, they would have been better served if there had been a spill and a clear vote in favour of Julia Gillard.

Better still, if he had remained titular head, but allowing Gillard to run the ship.

AFAIC, they are the genuine mistakes by the government, because they allowed the Liars Party in conjunction with the msm, to gain control of the message delivered to the public.

There should have been the clear threat of Canadian style legislation from the outset and imo, that is how the government should now proceed.

There should be an announcement that legislation is being framed along those lines which include severe penalties for infringement.

The msm would then be wedged; they can't very well cry foul at legislation to ensure that they don't tell porkies when broadcasting the news. To whinge would send the very clear message that they are already lying and are inherently dishonest. Which we already know.

She even predicted how Tony Abbott would react to the speech Julia Gillard is scheduled to give this morning on the subject of electricity prices.

Ad astra, you don't really need Liealot to open his gob to predict his reaction to the PM's speech on any subject at all.

"Tony Abbott says *.......*........*.........* We'll all be rooned unless you give me the keys to the Lodge."

* insert the 3 word slogan of your choice.

Are you sure she isn't a Liars Party adviser?

DMW @10.53am, do you get the feeling that your messaqe is being manipulated to put you in the worst possible light? And that you just can't get your message out?

After reading Ad astra's link to Sabra Lane's spin, do you still honestly believe that it's government incompetence which prevents their message getting traction?

Just asking.


August 7. 2012 12:09 PM

Ad astra

Hi Lyn
Every day, your Twitterverse gives us a good feel for what is hitting the headlines.  

This morning it is interesting to read how the papers have handled the Newspoll figures.  Although Labor supporters are not about to throw their hats in the air – Craig Emerson certainly didn’t – the commentators for the most part show their pain in reporting Labor’s improved position, and set out to minimize Labor’s or Julia Gillard’s contribution to it.  Her going on holiday was cynically suggested as a significant factor, and of course the London Olympics, although no one has ventured an explanation of why the Olympics would make voters more enamoured of Labor.

Of more interest is the small poll that shows a 9% fall in Campbell Newman’s vote in his own electorate, and a substantial level of dissatisfaction with his performance.  Did you realize that if an election were held today, on these figures Can Do would lose his seat and the LNP would be swept from power in a catastrophic landslide!

No doubt we will hear a lot more about electricity prices during the day.

Ad astra

August 7. 2012 12:15 PM



I am interested in what you have to say. However, I do have to admit that when posts get too long I switch off, except for Lyn's of course because for obvious reasons. This medium is difficult and I am mindful that points can get lost. I understand the need to clarify, but I do think we need to give people the benefit of the doubt.

I make up my own mind as to whether I think someone is genuine or not. I really do not like it when people are disingenuous.

I just want the truth from the media, I don't want opinion wrapped up as the truth. The Australian economy is doing well, we missed the GFC because of quick action by this government, could money have been spent better, wiser.....probably, but please don't take away the wins that this government has done. Should we have a carbon price and change the way we get energy....yes. Should we use mining money to the benefit of social policy.....I believe we should.

If I want opinions I will read opinion pieces. But I will always make up my own mind. Sadly that isn't the majority that's why it is so important to have a non biased media.


August 7. 2012 12:59 PM


Hi jane,
I haven't heard or read the rest of the Sabra Lane report so I can't give a fully informed assessment.

I hesitate to comment seriously on the polls for any number of reasons and I would hope that my comment on the numbers in the early hours of the morning re Swanny and the 'jump' were taken, as intended, in jest.

The excerpt provided by Ad, taken at face value, is based on facts as far as we know. The numbers used are the numbers from the poll so I have no problem with them being used.

The primary vote has shown an increase and it appears to have come the undecided and/or others part of the field and the two party preferred has not changed a lot so in many ways it is status quo.

If I were to have a problem with it the first would be the obvious that the election wasn't held last weekend so the poll proves nothing we didn't already know.

I guess then the problem must be in the choice of words such as Labor still faces an electoral wipe out ... the jump makes little difference ... amid all this chatter about the leadership and any emphasis placed on those words.

There are some elements of truth in the words. Yes, IF those numbers are replicated at an election Labor does face a wipe out. It is still a bigger IF than I am able to type. I question the need to relate the numbers to chatter about leadership etc. but well, life in the fishbowl of political coverage gets like that.

So that excerpt, on its' own, doesn't sway me one way or the other. In and of itself it indicates nothing to me about why the government isn't able to sell its' message.

What could sway me, if I needed swaying in that direction is the very well written and, in my opinion, good assessment of some of the causes of Labor's woes in the earlier part of your comment.

Despite what some may believe, I do not have big delusions about the impact of the negative press the government and the PM cop on an all too regular basis. I do, at times, wonder how some perceive that a particular report or article is biased and negative BS when I find it a reasonable assessment of the state of play, but that is part of what makes politics interesting.

... do you still honestly believe that it's government incompetence which prevents their message getting traction?

I wouldn't use the word incompetent, nor would I suggest that the government is in any way 'prevented' from getting its' message out as they are not. How the message is received is another story.

As 2353 has suggested the government has many tools at its' disposal to get its' message out and when those tools effectively are used effectively there may be some chance at turning things around.

I hesitate to use numbers for fear of being pinned down on them and being asked to justify them beyond reasonable doubt so I will use the latest provided. At the moment the government takes 33 steps forward and then 46 backward. They need to turn that around.


August 7. 2012 01:18 PM


Hi Ad Astra

Here are some lovely compliments I have collected about you, for you.

Mark ‏
An excellent article by Ad Astra over at The Political Sword about how print media is corrupting our democracy:

Helen Tudor‏
I love this useful blog, Tks so much....“@Adastra5: LYN'S DAILY LINKS updated on The Political Sword: www.thepoliticalsword.com/.../...-DAILY-LINKS.aspx

So Abbott talks about press freedom, same day @Adastra5 publishes www.independentaustralia.net/.../the-media-in-the-middleA coincidence? I think not!
@independentaus #auspol

@davrosz @adastra5 Excellent piece! Thank you.

  Brigadier Slog ‏
MUST reading RT @lynlinking: Truth is irrelevant — bringing PM Gillard and her Govt. down is all that counts. Excerpt www.independentaustralia.net/.../

Paul Christensen‏
@Maybeee2011 @adastra5 @independentaus brilliant! Should be compulsory reading for all Australians. Murdoch should be in gaol! #auspol

@paulch_6 @Adastra5 @independentaus Ad Astra is one very, very good writer! Check out his very active blog for much more.

@Adastra5 #mediainthemiddle,vwell said been seeing this for so long shame this can't be broadcast nation wide.Media watchdog now

Occupy Melbourne‏
Great story by @Adastra5 about biased Australian media. www.independentaustralia.net/.../ @citmedcol #auspol

So Abbott talks about press freedom, same day @Adastra5 publishes www.independentaustralia.net/.../the-media-in-the-middleA coincidence? I think not!
@independentaus #auspol

newsfeedAU and 3 others retweeted you 3h: Truth is irrelevant — bringing PM Gillard



August 7. 2012 01:31 PM


Good luck,  TT! As you go under and then come round try to catch the stuff you ramble on about!  I found that fascinating to ponder over as I lay around recovering from it all, and very good occupational therapy.  Not having been near a hospital for almost half a century I had to adjust to all sorts of restrictions this time around, the least of which was learning how to walk on crutches.  The last time in the sixties I was very willing to accept strict nursing regimes because I was pre-occupied with my new baby son.  This time I had long stretches of time to think about issues I thought long dealt with but now had sensed myself burbling on about immediately pre and post op.    Again, best wishes for a speedy recovery and return to pain free pees.


August 7. 2012 01:47 PM


Another example of the ALP not seing the wood for the trees.


The ALP campaign in the Queensland election was pathetic at best.


August 7. 2012 02:02 PM


Oh Dear,
I hesitate but link I must to this:

Wayne Swan struck right note: Kevin Rudd supporter Ben Packham TheOz
A RUDD supporter has attributed Labor's five point bounce in today's Newspoll to the "Bruce Springsteen effect", saying Wayne Swan struck the right note in his Boss-inspired speech last week.
The MP, who asked not to be named, said Julia Gillard could learn from the Treasurer and his ability to construct a political narrative.


The quote provided is all that there is before going through the paywall which I haven't.

I am not sure what is worse about this but I will go with that Rudd supporter must be even dumber than me if they really think the Sprinsteen factor dragged 5 points back the Labor side.

As for building a narrative maybe a partly good point.

Unnamed Rudd supporter? No comment.


August 7. 2012 02:21 PM


DMW might wave tithrough to the keeper but I'm not.  From the article linked to above A RUDD supporter has attributed Labor's five point bounce in today's Newspoll to the "Bruce Springsteen effect", .

First - they are commenting to the media on an internal party matter.  YOu don't see LNP MP's commenting on Pyne's prefromance and comparing it with what Abbott should do.

Second - they are identified as supporting someone who is not the leader of the party.  If the ALP won't publically support the PM, why should the media?

The media don't need to make this stuff up - its being fed to them on a plate by those that claim the media is screwing them.  How does that work?


August 7. 2012 02:22 PM

Ad astra

Hi Lyn
Thank you for posting those generous comments about Media in the middle.  It is gratifying to note how much it has resonated with so many folk.

We are a small voice, but some are listening, and agreeing.  Such remarks are a stimulus to continue the fight for fairness even although it is against the most power force in the media.  After all, David did defeat Goliath.

Ad astra

August 7. 2012 02:43 PM


My modem/router has been on the blink and I have really missed reading TPS.  I am now back on air and trying to catch up on all of the posts of the last week.

I watched Q&A last night.  Q&A was from Brisbane. The thing that really stood out to me was the change in public sentiment since the screening from Toowoomba (hostile) a few months back.  The audience was so anti Campbell Newmann that I perceived a change toward Labor and said so to my spouse.  I was then not surprised to find a change in the polls this morning.  Let's hope that this is the start to a turn around.    


August 7. 2012 02:53 PM

42 long

Just a brief comment on electricity prices.
   The actual product,( the electricity) goes into the grid at about 3 cents per Kw/hr or less. ( from a power station) Even if the price doubled it would only add 3 cents.
   The rest is transmission infrastructure costs, state dividends and your chosen distributors charges. You pay about 23 cents plus a connection fee even if you don't use any. Work out for yourself who is telling porkies, in this discussion.
Some state governments have held domestic prices down, so there may be some catch-up effect built in. The industry needs direction and certainty to invest for the future. Coal will only get dearer and renewables will get cheaper. Baseline solar is available even working in Spain. Perhaps the problem is vested interests, mainly.

42 long

August 7. 2012 03:09 PM

Ad astra reply

Today I watched PM Gillard address the Energy Policy Institute on electricity prices.  Her address was soundly based, well written and convincingly delivered.  Although much of it was technical, it was easy to follow her train of thought.  Even more impressive were her answers to questions from a highly technical audience sans political journalists.  She seemed to not just grasp the nature of the questions, but answer them competently, and with assurance.  Martin Ferguson was with her, so she passed some to him, but not before she answered herself.  He answered with assurance, showing his vast technical knowledge.

I thought as she spoke how competent she is, no matter what the subject.  She is always across her subject thoroughly.  She is, in a word, a very intelligent and competent person, one I'm personally proud of as our nation's leader.

I asked myself how Tony Abbott would have handled that event.  I cannot imagine how he could possibly have coped, as it was a technical subject that would never lend itself to three word slogans.  And who on his front bench could have answered the technical questions that Martin Ferguson answered so well?

How anyone could choose Tony Abbott over Julia Gillard is beyond rational understanding.

Ad astra reply

August 7. 2012 03:09 PM


DMW, I wasn't in fact commenting on the poll figures, but on Sabra Lane's negative spin on the poll figures to demonstrate how the msm manipulates anything positive for the government into a negative.

I wouldn't use the word incompetent, nor would I suggest that the government is in any way 'prevented' from getting its' message out as they are not. How the message is received is another story.

You mean like Shamaham's report claiming that Julia Gillard's "nagging" about European economic management had them furious. In fact, as Shamaham knew very well, it was the Canadian PM who had made the remarks and attracted the fury.

And despite being corrected, Shamaham has continued to spruik the lie. Obviously the story will be received as Julia Gillard as an inept, incompetent accident prone failure, although the opposite is true.

So despite the government's effective message, the very opposite has been delivered by the msm. And this is what the government is up against. Despite the government correcting Shamaham's lie, the perceived message is one of an incompetent PM who should be removed.

I'd be interested to know what tools the government has at its disposal to get its message out against such willful dishonesty.

LIR also makes the point about how quick action by the government sheltered us from the GFC and the problems being suffered by the rest of the western world, yet it's reported as wasteful and unnecessary, when the published evidence unequivocally contradicts that view.


August 7. 2012 03:16 PM


There are few interesting points/questions about the article.

Did this unnamed source tell Packham wtte 'I am a Rudd supporter' or is it an assumption. Can we be reasonably sure though it is an accurate descriptor?

As Packham is sure that the source is a Rudd supporter how much did this influence the tenor of the story? Would he have written the story if the source had been a Gillard supporter or would Packham used an even bigger egg-beater?

My memory of the use of leaks in running a story was to always check what is the motive of the person providing this leak?

I don't know if all journalists still do that.

If the ALP won't publically support the PM, why should the media?  To which I would add or the public?

I am sure you are familiar with variations on the old line of 'If you can't lead your party what hope do you have in leading the country?'

On the LNP leaking. There has been very little so far so they are holding the line pretty well but there have been some occasional puffs of smoke so all is not well inside the camp.


August 7. 2012 03:20 PM


not that I have any desire for a metaphoric David to come along but may humbly propose that you are a Goliath in terms your stature in Aus politics blogging.


August 7. 2012 03:23 PM

Ad astra reply

I too was impressed with Q&A last night.  It was one of the most favourable for Labor for ages.  Campbell Newman copped a lot of criticism, which garnered quite a lot of support from the audience.  If this audience is any guide to the way Quenslanders are now feeling about Can Do, he has wasted a lot of his political capital already.  George Brandis was not able to get away with his slick-tongued answers as he usually does; several times he looked flummoxed.  Craig Emerson did well.  

Maybe, just maybe, things are turning around for Labor, which means of course that we can soon expect another onslaught from News Limited.  It fears what a re-elected Gillard Government might do to curb the media.

Ad astra reply

August 7. 2012 03:42 PM


I accept that you took Sabra Lane's comments as negative spin.

LadyInRed's comments about the actions re the GFC are good points. Without going too deeply into it, can you recall any pre-emptive information from the government coming out at the time telling us why the actions were good and based on sound policy advice from Treasury etc.

Cold weighty tomes such as the Orgill Report can appear only as an after the fact justification no matter how much the evidence is pointing out the programme was effective and with little waste. I am not saying that is a fair and reasonable assessment of the Orgill or any other report but the inherent cynicism of many in the electorate puts less weight such reports.

In a nutshell the government too often appears reactive rather than proactive. Leading from the backfoot.


August 7. 2012 03:42 PM

42 long

  Now what would Limited News have to fear from any investigation? If anything is wrong no one at the top will have any knowledge of it any how. It will just be afew rogue reporters telling fibs.
  Just bring on the Canadian solution. No country can afford the cancer of Faux News. It's outrageous.
  What is so wrong with the situation being that when an error is found a retraction/correction is provided in as obvious a way as the first assertion was made. Just decency and good manners I would have thought ( Unless your aim was to do harm, there shouldn't be a problem).

42 long

August 7. 2012 03:47 PM

Ad astra reply

Thank you for a lovely compliment.  Whatever the moniker, there's lots of fight inside.

Ad astra reply

August 7. 2012 04:12 PM



Just watched most of Q&A and the thing I noted was that even though the audience was only 28% Labor the cheering for traditional Labor values was much louder than the 43% Libs could muster for any Liberal values on show.

The questions were more favourable for Labor values to shine through.

Brandis as pompus as ever.

Add this to the general feeling I got out and about on the weekend - I think the tide is turning.


August 7. 2012 04:12 PM


Ad, what a brilliant article. Did I also mention that you're such as exceptional wordsmith?


August 7. 2012 05:02 PM

Ad astra

I agree. The audience seemed warm to Labor values, and not all that impressed with the Brandis line.  Tides do turn.

Thank you for your complimentary remarks.  They are much appreciated from a fellow writer.

Ad astra

August 7. 2012 05:05 PM


It's neurotic.

I watched George Brandis on Q&A last night, watched his bristling anger, and saw it all there, the impotent fury of those cut off from the twin teats of power and admiration Conservatives just take as a given, the white-lipped urge to drag down and lecture in one spittling breath, the disgust and distaste of having to do it all as an also-ran, an outsider, a loser.

Which Tony Abbott epitomises, and as 'leader', feeds back and through all those who follow him, a closed circuit of ratification and sparking irrelevance that has only one outlet, hatred.

Which they pretend, which they convince themselves, is seeing the world as it really is, as being the calm and modulated voices of reason and a 'sensible centre'.

But that trail of spittle still stretches away across the tabletop, a mess of sour bodily juices someone else has to wipe away. Someone on minimum wage.


August 7. 2012 05:10 PM



I remember that Rudd was taking Ken Henry's advice on the GFC go in early, go in hard and go households. That's proactive.

However, as soon as it appeared we had largely missed the crisis the MSM started bleating, and the negative campaigning started. We could've done this! we should have done that! Totally missing, in fact totally ignoring, that we came out of it OK. No pats on the back, nothing but bleating. Those that tried to point out we were saved were shouted down or largely ignored.

I don't want to denigrate the sad outcome of some of the dodgy greedy operators who caused lives to be lost in the pink batts program, but that became the catch cry that got remembered.

It was kind of like, great you saved us but couldn't you have done it better?  The majority of people in this country have no idea what it is really like to face mass unemployment. The people of Qld are finding out - and we so don't need the austerity Can-do is proposing. He is supposed to be for small business well when you take the amount of jobs he is away every small business will feel it, and anyone who has money just put it away as well.

The restaurants on the sunshine coast were pretty much empty last week.


August 7. 2012 05:17 PM



Here is an example of the absolute tripe that was around at the time. IPA of course, and they haven't stopped bleating and spewing their negativity since:



August 7. 2012 05:22 PM



I really don't know whether to laugh at you or cry for you. If your purpose in posting comments at TPS is to confuse readers, then with regard to me, consider yourself a raging success.

I am posting this in a rhetoric sense and have no desire to be further confused by any reply from you.

However other readers might be able to make sense of the following interchange of posts between us, and fill me in on what I may be failing to see.

On Sunday you asked:

"The Productivity Commission reccommended that it (NDIS) be fully funded by the federal government. I don't know who made the decision to ask the states to co-fund the trials and why that decision was made. I have not seen or heard any case being made for the states funding part of the trial.

Was it a 'political' decision or was there some other advice that it should go that way?"

Having already perused the Productivity Commission report, I replied:

"The Productivity Commission recommended that the NDIS be federally funded and also that the $4.7 billion currently spent by states on disability services be collected into the funding pool. (Page 675 of the report)

Since the states will be contributing to the full scheme if the PC's recommendation is followed, it is unsurprising that they have been asked to contribute to the trial."

So far so good!!!!  Those quotes, one from each of us set the scene.

To my reply in answer to your questionyou then comment:
"If I were to rewrite it as: Th PC reccommended that all extra (new?) funds come from the commonwealth would I be interpreting it correctly?"

Note that the first and only use of the word "new" (funds) in our interchange was by you, ie in case you don't understand, it came to TPS via your keyboard.

Then today, in an yet another ad hominem comment accusing me of "spin", you say the following:

"It comes from the same place that in the discussion around the NDIS allows you (ie me, Psyclaw) to turn the words 'current spending' into something meaning 'new spending'."

Can I point out that my reply to your question was not by way of argument or debate. I engaged in no discussion. It was descriptive prose. I had no axe to grind about the funding of the NDIS. I offered no opinion about the funding of the NDIS.

At no time did I use the phrases "current spending" or "new spending", nor did I mention anything at all about spending, except to explicitly quote the Productivity Commission.

The end result of this is that your mind has created a fabrication about something I at no point mentioned, and you use this aberrant fabrication to ad hominem me.

Very strange indeed!


August 7. 2012 05:35 PM


DMW @3.42pm, not off the top of my head. However, I seem to recall the government saying that they wanted to keep people in employment and to do so they were going to bring forward the planned infrastructure programs such as BER and HIP.

As I recall the building industry was starting to flag and the rush was to stop it collapsing. I believe the government did make that point.

I think that before the GFC, they'd planned to roll out both over a couple of terms.

I do remember valiant attempts to counter the negative spin wrt BER, when Prissy was braying about the waaasste. However, his braying was given more coverage.

And I remember reading some time later that they hadn't told us how touch and go it was to keep the economy from collapsing.

In retrospect that was a big mistake in light of the Liars spruiking that there was no GFC and that even if there was a GFC, it was confined to Europe and the US.

Swan and other Ministers did their best over the background noise of Liars faux outrage, but the tone had been set.

I do think that their biggest ever blunder was the dodgy Rudd replacement. Replacing him was the right move, but it couldn't have been done more clumsily and unconvincingly.

And that is the rod that has been used to beat the PM with and undermine her leadership and government, imo.

That and the carbon tax lie meme. I noticed Brandis tried that old chestnut on Q&A.


August 7. 2012 05:39 PM


Hi Ad

Here is the latest example of the hate coming from the Liberals towards our Prime Minister:-

Naturally the MSM can't wait to report glaring headlines if it's in anyway nasty to Julia Gillard.

PM has 'the credibility of a cane toad'
WA Energy Minister Peter Collier says Julia Gillard has "the credibility of a cane toad" while defending the State's power price rises.

In a scathing rebuke to the Prime Minister's comments that State governments had unjustifiably increased electricity prices over the past four years, Mr Collier said this afternoon that "it was probably the biggest act of political hand balling I've ever seen".

"Quite frankly, if you're going to use the words Labor and energy in the same sentence you've got to use the word incompetent as well," he said.



August 7. 2012 05:51 PM


LiR - you should see the small shops along George St, Brisbane


August 7. 2012 06:02 PM

Ad astra

Hi Lyn
It seems Julia has badly stung the States.  When the reaction of WA Energy Minister Peter Collier is to say she has the 'credibility of cane toad', we know she has already won.

Ad astra

August 7. 2012 06:13 PM


Well how did that happen?

A couple of months after I put a picture on Gravitar it finally turns up somewhere?  Don't know if I like it there now.Laughing


August 7. 2012 06:27 PM


If only it had of appeared a couple days ago it may have been a salutatory reminder to someone I know very well Tong


August 7. 2012 06:28 PM



you win


August 7. 2012 07:35 PM


DMW - nil bastardum carborundum. Cool


August 7. 2012 07:47 PM


"WA Energy Minister Peter Collier says Julia Gillard has "the credibility of a cane toad" while defending the State's power price rises."

See my post of 05:05 PM today.



August 7. 2012 08:16 PM


Hi Happy Comrades of the Sword!
I AM back from LaLa Land! Part way at least.
And I am in pain yes but not too bad (yet anyway) and I feel it all might have worked. Behold the Power of Dog!

"Happy Comrades"? - Well however we deride The Polls, they do 'suck', as a rush of mobile water sucks surrounding calm water with it, and this particular rush is very powerful. Panic Stations you rotten Abbortians! "If an election were held today in Queensland ..!.." - those immortal words Cool - Crapsmell Newman would lose his seat! I did see some of Q&A last night, GOOD ON YOU CRAIG, that's the stuff, TALK BACK OVER the Brandises, Craig you pulverised the bastard last night, he had NO friends, he was pathetic and just looked nasty and mean - (Was that before the Poll was released or not?)

Abbortt will be bouncing off the walls, and others will join in bouncing him now. GET OUT YOU BASTARD! Sabra Lane can jerk you all she likes, WE WILL PREVAIL! Change leader to Julie Bishop, Change to Bronwyn Bishop if you like, Turdball, Snotty Joe, do what you will, hey, Your defences are down, We gotcha where we wantcha and you can't escape nohow. I wouldn't again go through all what I've gone through in the last 3 weeks for $100K but I'd take the choice in an instant to ensure the re-election of this Government, and I even think I'm sincere in saying that. I could hardly choose otherwise! "For what profiteth it a man to gain $100K and lose his country's soul?" $100K would not afford me the chance to die content, a Labor Government that I played even a tiny part in helping to achieve, now you're talking!

Sure we have far to go, but we have budged the bogged vehicle of State, KEEP IT GOING, DON'T STOP NOW!

Have you noticed in the last few weeks on Twitter and elsewhere the accolades for Ad astra for his articles, and for Lyn Tweety for her Links, and indeed for the Sword for all its qualities?! I am so proud of us! Dog make us mighty!

On Twitter I keep saying (and there are LEGION occasions to do so) that "The ABC political "experts" Smile are a nest of Right-Wing Vipers! And now I keep pointing out on Twitter that Leigh Sales and others are going there desperately trying to lift their rattings, ( Smile ), by spruiking their pathetic programmes to the 5th Estate? Guess who's winning! Not all programmes are crooked, Foreign Correspondent and a few others have their moments, and I LOVE Rake, but the political programmes, Q&A not least, are nothing but RW propaganda day after month after year. The ABC24 Breakfast programme stinks, the News programmes stink, the bias is blatant and ever-growing more so. Comrades we must focus on the ABC bigotry, Sabra Lane is a case in point, hound them day after day, NO PASARAN!

Oh Friends, thank you again for your kind wishes, you really have helped, and the encouraging if lonely Poll is a great joy to come back to. The mighty BISONs are our great and noble allies here, they will grind the Abbortians to dust, including in the strange State of Queensland where Anna Bligh was so egregiously maligned in a ferment of confected hatred, well the rapidly chastened people must now drink to the lees their bitter State Government vintage, they have no Upper House so for now Crapsmell is effectively Dictator, but the People do have some recourse in a year or so to bringing this Bjelke clone to heel, and I do doubt, his unprecedented majority notwithstanding, whether his Government will see a second term. Most of his seats have narrow margins, LNP can have its false sense of security, all the better to delete them with! For they will have a re-elected and uncompromising Gillard Government and a revitalised local ALP to deal with next time, and a very chastened population by then.

Ah gee I do go on, but HOORAY for us, nothing succeeds like success, and all LABOR Comrades can afford a little rejoice for a minute.

AAARRRGGHHHH Pain! but I just have to handle it for a few days more I hope. And the poll does help.



August 7. 2012 08:22 PM


A propos nothing much, when I was a boy in Tamworth, I had a grey horse which had been bred at Moonbi, a backwards little village about 24 Klm north of Tamworth.

The nag din't have much ticker ...... it always preferred to follow rather than lead.

It was a bit frustrating at times, but I guess it just couldn't help it. It was just in its DNA.


August 7. 2012 08:31 PM


Well this Grey had different DNA altogether!



August 7. 2012 09:08 PM


TT Comrade

Great to hear from you so soon after the "knifing" (with modern weapons I assume). Take it easy for a while, but I guess that like most of us here, posting on the TPS is a pleasure.

Yep, the GG was probably my favourite equine of all. Invariably he'd come into the straight 4 or 5 or 6 horses or more back, and then put his head down and mow them down one by one, coming out a clear winner at the end usually.

The Basics
DOB:   1967
Record:   54-29-6.5-8-7
Sire:   Sunset Hue
Dam:   Woodie Wonder
Sex:   horse
Region:   Western Downs


Gunsynd was the most popular horse to come out of Queensland. He cost only $1300 as a yearling and ended up Australia's top money earner in the early 1970s. A brilliant miler who is the only horse to win Australia's four Group 1 miles - Epsom, Toorak, Emirates and Doncaster - in the one season. Ran third in a Melbourne Cup carrying a mammoth 60kgs.Gunsynd Throughout his career, Gunsynd was trained by H. Wehlow and T.J. Smtih.


August 7. 2012 09:16 PM


I asked myself how Tony Abbott would have handled that event.

Still running I should think, Ad astra. As for who on his front bench....Turnbull is the only one I can think of who could possibly fit the bill. The others are all too dumb or too lazy to address such an audience.

And @3.23pm, couldn't agree more.

@6.02pm. Ooohh! Poor widdle WA liar, outfoxed by the red haired vixen. Or should I say cane toad? Bwwahahahaha!

LIR @5.10pm, I well remember all the screeching, hand wringing and sound and fury which accompanied the $900 stimulus payment.

All the idiots whining because the pensioners will put the money through the pokies and the poor people will buy great big flat screen plasma tvs.

Not one of the fools understood that was the purpose of the $900-buy stuff and keep retail workers employed. And the clowns still don't.

And now we have the Liars Party in Queensland doing just what they would have done in 2008 and it's not a pretty sight. Thank God we had the ALP in power in 2008 and now.

And thank God that in Windsor, Oakeshott and Wilkie we had 3 people who went with the positive.

When will small business and the rural sector geddit? They always do better with the ALP.


August 7. 2012 09:20 PM



Great to see that you are "back" and in such fine form.  The wonders of modern surgery (or "sugery")!  I enjoy your posts enormously and am very glad that you can now look forward to a healthy recovery (nae doot aboot it!).


August 7. 2012 09:26 PM

Ad astra

Talk Turkey
Welcome back from the travails of surgery.  You are obviously in great shape and good literary form.  I sent you a text this afternoon, and will ring tomorrow.  Have restful night.

Ad astra

August 7. 2012 09:36 PM

42 long

What are you people on? I can undersatand with TT it is the NO2 wearing off.. Anyhow a bit of enthusiasm won't hurt.. glad to see your return, hopefully restored to perfection.
    Aren't all these right wingers supposed to be superior and classy. IF you believe them, they are. Cane Toad comparison. How terribly clever!!!  Julia must be striking a raw spot.
  Love it when the Jesuits got stuck into Tony. They are the brainy ones amongst the Cartolics.
  The LNP have a lot to answer for. It was them who appointed Tony, as leader. IF he becomes Prime minister we are going to look like a right lot of drongoes, every time he opens his mouth. "It's like this"... and flaps his arms. That will never get off the ground. How are they going to be rid of him without losing face? what a dilemma, and there's not a lot of time left, before the election.
I could feel genuine sorrow for tones and I don't hate him, deep down, but he really IS dangerous, and will muck a lot of things up.

42 long

August 7. 2012 09:47 PM


.....he was pathetic and just looked nasty and mean....

Showing his true colours, TT.

Great to see you back in form, on form and ready to stick it to the buggers. Go TT!


August 7. 2012 09:49 PM


Hi Talk Turkey

Great to hear you are in recovery, I suppose you have the drip attached to your arm, they are painful I know, but you sound pretty bright and cheerful.

We are all barracking for you.

Hope you have a restful night and did I hear someone say, ask for all the tablets they will let you have, sleeping ones I mean.

Best wishes to you SmileSmileSmile


August 7. 2012 10:36 PM


rest easy & long = recover well

& thanks for Cool


August 7. 2012 10:46 PM


Hi 2353,
msg rcd & understood & how it is Smile


August 7. 2012 10:55 PM


Michael @ 7:47 PM
About the same level of credibility as the Queensland State of Origin Cane Toads I guess.

... and could probably crush cockroaches with the same reckless abandon


August 7. 2012 10:58 PM


A great man on the Drum tonight ..... the Rabbi from Emmanuel Synagogue, Sydney.

The guy actually talks to his congregation about such matters as ASs, the poor form of the No NO No jerk, and the truth about carbon pricing.

Asked if he really did talk about these things from his "pulpit", he replied "of course"

He wants quick processing of a larger AS intake to occur in Malaysia and Indonesia, done by Australian personnel, and then safe transport here.

It is so good (a) to have a cleric speaking out about controversial social issues and (b) expressing views that a religious leader should express ie charity, brotherhood, cooperation, honesty, and love thy neighbour. He is clearly no fan of Abbott.

Of course the expertise and fairness of fill-in compere Geraldine Doogue played no small role in allowing the Rabbi to express his views uninterrupted  Her conversational style rather than a quick, unrelated next question allowed the Rabbi's views to wisely unfold.


August 7. 2012 11:27 PM


Sleep tight, TT.  Well, maybe not tight, that won't help your bladder!   Sleep well!


August 7. 2012 11:53 PM


LadyInRed @ 5:10 PM
I have been out with family

Agreed the actions were proactive and indeed the required decisions were urgent.

This is from a hazy memory. Although there were some mentions of the advice I don't recall any solid statements or ongoing 'education'. I do recall in the Sept - December 2008 period both Rudd and Swann would not use the words recession or deficit, yet that was clearly what the economy was facing.

This is part supposition on my part but it seems as though at the time that the advice and political nous of the hard heads like Lyndsay Tanner was being ignored. Again hazy but I recall some mention of Tanner not being consulted around a few of the decisions.

It is understandable that there were things left undone as things were moving very fast and the urgency was top of the mind.

Most of the focus at that time seemed be on the oh goody there is a $900 bonus coming to you as an early chrissie present.

Most of the 'education' about the need for actions and solid talk about the advice occured after the criticism started. Some of the debunking only occured because the likes of the possum delved into the numbers.

And there is the point we had to wait months for the results of enquiries before the government actually started to fully defend itself and my contention is that had they done some spade work early a lot of the crticism could have been shown up stupid and/or lies.


August 8. 2012 12:22 AM


jane @ 5:35 PM
Hard to disagree with anything you wrote and I have no desire to so anyway Smile

As noted above to LIR, it seemed to be left to the likes of possum, Quiggin and a few others to come up with the debunking.

Let's not get too deep into it, but the handling of the Henry Tax Review had a similar, for want of a more appropriate word, amateur feel about it. Sat on for what seems forever, finally released, little time for discussion and then, whammo, a Super profits tax that morphed into a lesser MRRT.

I may well be overstating it, but the appearance is, Wow, this a great idea let's do it. While the evidence was undoubtedly compelling, after all it convinced a fairly hard nosed cabinet, the pattern seems to be dive in head first without looking for the rocks and when the head gets banged they come all groggy and started to stutter out the reasoning.

The hard lesson, hopefully learned, take the public into your confidence, lay out the nuts and bolts, describe the plan and then get on with it.

Oh, and very important, don't play political stuntman stuff.


August 8. 2012 02:35 AM


Well if ever I needed proof that Ad astra's blog was Family, I've got it now. I weep easy these days, well I'm misty now, thank you all you lovely Lefty wellwishers.

The nurse I called a sourpuss, well I've found her sweet spot and when she started being nice I gave her a Brucie Bilby book, now she's all smiles, you can say it's a suck (and it is) but a sincere and pretty little one, and I give one to all the people who are really nice to me, and have done for years. (I had heaps printed, financial dead loss but good in lots of other ways including pushing my Native Wildlife agenda.)
Yes Lyn I have the odd cannula attachment but no drips atm but, ummm, that damn catheter is still in place after the TURP, and after I wrote AAAARRRGGHHHH last post I went back to Agony Land, it comes and goes and it is killing when it happens, only Codeine seems to help at all, I think I'm allergic to Morphine (violent vomiting) but I'd take the vomiting option rather than the pain I must say. I'll ask for some later on if the pain persists. Atm it's bearable but far from absent.

Enough, anyway. Psyclaw I'm a bit pleased with myself for finding your very most fave rave horse of all time, yes he was special. As for your uncompetitive grey, well there's more to life even for horses than being fastest - personality, endurance, prettiness even, so I hope you managed to like him anyway.

Seems we do keep having sort of false starts with Labor's fortunes, the reason of course is the MSM curdles every good thing we do and conflates and saccharine-coats everything Abbortt does, but this time, and from now, that slow grinding I have talked of is happening, no more mileage out of boats, Thomson, Slipper, "CarbonTax" (which is making Abbortt look more ridiculous every day, it's a winner for us now.)

If there's one thing I know about bufo marinus the Pacific Cane Toad it's this, You better believe it! So much for that stupid insult! On the other hand Snotty Joe Hockey is a very fine specimen of buffoonus maximus,  he is a great help to our election campaign.

Starting to feel sick now, better try to go back to sleep. One Mincing Poodle, two . . .  


August 8. 2012 07:19 AM



Electricity prices: the facts,Julia Gillard, Speech to the Energy Policy Institute of Australia
Following the recent round of price increases, revenue for network enterprises wholly owned by State Governments is up fifty per cent over the previous five year period.This was in a period when revenue for the rest of the market players grew less than thirty per cent.In other words, revenue to the States went up nearly twice as fast as revenue to the private network operators.This has hit consumers hard.

Gillard finally shifts electricity debate onto the real problem, Giles Parkinson, Crikey
And this discussion should be about massive over-investment. One quarter of all electricity costs are spent to meet peak events that last for less than two days a year in total (or in fact have hardly happened at all in the last three years), and one-sixth of our national electricity networks — $11 billion in infrastructure — caters for peak events that last for barely four days per year. “It’s like building a 10-lane freeway, but with two lanes that are only used or needed for one long weekend,”

PM tells states to cut electricity costs, ABC
Ms Gillard is calling on the states to reform energy markets, saying the price hikes of the past four years cannot continue. She says electricity costs cannot continue to rise at the levels they have over the past four years.

POWER BILLS, The Monthly
Power prices have risen up to 69% over the past five years, and the government is keen to make the point that prices were rising long before the carbon tax arrived (although this has contributed 10% of the increase).The main culprit for rising electricity bills, as Ellen Fanning recently reported, is actually the $46 billion upgrade and extension of Australia's electricity network that's currently underway.

Anger mounts over Gillard's power ultimatum, ABC
Prime Minister Julia Gillard has been accused of hypocrisy and compared to a cane toad after she told the states to lower electricity prices, or else. Federal Opposition energy spokesman Ian MacFarlane admits state governments have using price rises to raise revenue, but says the Prime Minister should have acted more quickly.

Abbott's Free And Easy Speech, New Matilda
He’s against a public interest test for media owners and in favour of impassioned, untrammelled debate. Free speech is an unqualified public good, the more of it we get, the better. There’s no debate about that, right? In fact, in Abbott’s hands, free speech is a blunt stick with which to bludgeon the centre-left.

How Bolt got Abbott to start the Freedom Wars, Andrew Cook and Matthew Knott, The Power Index
I don't think what Bolt wrote would be saved by Abbott's law … It didn't just offend. The judge found that it failed on all four grounds: it offended, insulted, humiliated and intimidated," he said.

Asking the same questions, expecting different answers, Ash Kelso,Independent Australia
After watching last night’s lame effort, I don’t think it’s going too far to say that the ABC’s Q&A is now a tired formula — and that the producers are basically flogging a dead horse. Now, I’m aware of the irony of complaining about a show that is essentially about complaining, but my real complaint is that the show didn’t have to develop this way.

En Passant » What would an Abbott Government look like? Let me introduce Campbell Newman, Darin Sulliven, Left Hack
The incessant lies about the deficit and what supposedly needs to be done is the same neoliberal madness and budget surplus fetish that Abbott and Hockey sprout every day at a federal level.

Licensing hate: the possible consequences of Abbott’s racial vilification changes ,Andrew Jakubowicz, The Conversation
What the IPA speech does is to direct public attention to what the rhetoric and the reality of human rights would look like under a returned Coalition government, with Senator Brandis as the potential Attorney General.This is not something we’ve really seen displayed, and it adds an important dimension to the emerging Australian future being planned by the opposition.

Andrew Bolt: his rights, our freedom, Min, Café Whispers
Section C18 of the Act, that being which Tony Abbott so vehemently opposes concerns offensive behaviour because of race, colour or national or ethnic origin. That’s correct it’s offensive behaviour, with the specifics being:

Two Big Wins for Our United Voice, United Voice Queensland
In just a few days we mobilised nearly 5000 supporters. We inundated Campbell Newman’s office with almost 2000 emails. We marched on his office. And we dominated the TV news for 4 of the last 6 days (at one stage we even beat the Olympics as first story

Now It’s Gerard Henderson getting facts wrong, Stephen Koukoulas, Market Economics
In writing about budget, Mr Henderson makes some howlers – he gets deficits and surpluses mixed up and percentage changes are wrong. And have a guess which direction those errors are? Do you think they make a Labor government look worse or better?Yep – you got it! All of the errors make Labor look worse, not the other way around.

The RBA didn’t cut interest rates, Stephen Koukoulas, Market Economics
At today’s meeting, the Board judged that, with inflation expected to be consistent with the target and growth close to trend, but with a more subdued international outlook than was the case a few months ago, the stance of monetary policy remained appropriate
Truth time. How much has the great big new tax pushed up the cost of living-, Peter Martin
Tony Abbott said its impact on the cost of living would be “almost unimaginable.” Joe Hockey said it would “drive up the price of everything.” National’s Senate leader Barnaby Joyce said it would force working mothers to pay “over $100 for a roast.”

Today’s Front Pages
Australia Newspaper Front Pages for 8 August 2012


August 8. 2012 08:17 AM


Jeesus Keerist!!...Thanks Lyn..for those bloody magnificent "links".....they are the greatest...straight to the nub of news..every day...YOU..are the greatest!!
And A waaayee we go!!


August 8. 2012 08:29 AM

Ad astra

LYN'S DAILY LINKS updated: www.thepoliticalsword.com/.../...-DAILY-LINKS.aspx

Ad astra

August 8. 2012 08:32 AM


Newman has left a loyal follower in the Brisbane City COuncil.


It must be a LNP thing.


August 8. 2012 08:34 AM

Ad astra

It's good to see you sparking in the early hours of the morning.  We hope you have comfortable day as you start your journey back to full health.

Ad astra

August 8. 2012 09:56 AM


The PM's speech about the need for states to discontinue / wind back their rapid electricity price increases of the past 4 years appears to be a major topic for today.

Grattan  reduces the issue to one of another attempt at Federal exertion of power (strength, not electrical) over the states. For mine, even if that was the main issue, who cares.

But the interesting aspect of the matter is the construction of so called "gold plated" poles and wires. This refers to building-in of capacity to cope with huge peak loads.

As someone pointed out on TV last night, this is akin to adding another 40 lanes to the Sydney harbour bridge just to cope with peak traffic, when at other times 8 or 10 lanes is plenty.

Somehow, built into this "gold plated" expenditure is also greater income for the energy suppliers, including state governments, and this is given as a main reason for the states' pursuing the more expensive option.

Now Abbott the (f)(t)ool has joined the debate claiming that "it is the JG government's own regulator that sets the price and that her speech was 'gold plated hypocrisy' ". He chooses to ignore the fact that the AER (Australian Energy Regulator) is an independent body. When it suits him of course he is happy to imply that the government has a hands on relationship with such statutory bodies eg  FWA, the Reserve Bank.  Lies and damned lies .... never pointed out by the MSM (which some strangely argue here, is a player of only secondary importance in the wider debate).

But as Geoff Angel of the Total Environment Centre points out, the AER can (1) only apply its rules and (2) its decisions are appellable to the Federal Admin Court where they are frequently overturned for legal reasons.

And whence cometh the AER's rules ..... neither Abbott nor the MSM choose to tell us. No, not from the federal government..... the rules are managed by the COAG energy ministers. Yes, the federal minister and all the state ministers, including those from the Abbott tribe.

Now Blind Freddy can see that if peak demand overloads the system, there are two options ....... build more capacity into the system OR reduce the peak load.

And there is a most obvious and far more cost effective method to bring about the latter. I speak of the installation of "smart meters" in every consumer's premises/home. These meters allow differential pricing at various times in the 24 hour cycle.

The result of this is that consumers will avoid peak usage like the plague, except where absolutely necessary.

I enjoy the use of such a meter and mange consumption to minimise cost. There are three pricing regimes throughout the day, Peak, Shoulder, and Off-Peak. For the purposes of this discussion let's assume that Shoulder and Off-Peak are the same (price)....the pricing difference between those two periods is relatively small. The main point is that in the Peak period ie weekdays between 2pm and 8pm the unit cost is hugely more expensive and all optional power use can be transferred by the consumer to a "cheaper" time of the day.

So the use of dishwashers, washing machines, pool filters, clothes dryers, showers, vacuuming, charging the electric car, and  power hungry tools can be limited to any other time rather than the 2pm-8pm time slot.

The prices charged by our supplier are 9.6cents (Off-Peak), 16.4 cents (Shoulder) and 40.6 cents (Peak) for each KwH. There is an obvious incentive to avoid as much Peak usage as possible.

Without any inconvenience at all, our usage has been managed such that the current (well itemised) bill shows that our Peak usage was 15.9%, Shoulder 50.4% and Off-Peak 33.7%.  As can be seen we are managing to avoid the Peak 40.6 cents per KwH quite substantially. And I stress, this has been  by time shifting only those elements of power use which were unnecessarily  carried out in the 2pm-8pm time slot ..... it has caused no inconvenience. Three years ago, our Peak usage was 28%. We have almost halved it now.

On hot days we continue to use our air conditioner whenever it is necessary ..... we make no effort to time shift that usage.

Now, getting back to the point of this post, instead of the "gold plated" wires and poles, the far cheaper installation of smart meters in all premises seems to be a more sensible option. This is an option that has not been uppermost in the states' plans.

Swordsters who do not have smart meters should perhaps contact their supplier to see if it is available to them, and if not why not and when will it be!


August 8. 2012 10:09 AM


Jaycee is right, your Links are the greatest! I've said before, your Links are my first port of call in the morning, some just whet the appetite to follow them, some just about tell the whole story. Your ability to pick the nub - Jaycee got that word right especially - is uncanny, you aren't just diligent and consistent, you're brilliant!

I don't have ANY idea how many people access stories through LynLinking each day, links interlinking with more links, but every one of us is far better informed, and every writer far better publicised than we would be otherwise.

I do know though that there is only one way we will ever be able to thank you - and Ad astra of course, and the unseen Web Monkey working away silently to keep The Political Sword up and running - and that is to return this amazing Labor Government in 2013. You are a mighty trouper, antidote to Abbortt and ignorance, your efforts are a key factor in making me so sanguine about that outcome. Hooray for You! And so say ALL of us: even the Unspeakable Few no doubt are only too happy - if ill-willed and ungrateful - to take advantage of the work you do so wonderfully each day.

My urologist/surgeon just came to see me, he's very pleased with my progress and I am too, well hopeful anyway, Please Dog I'm over the worst now. Dr Q says I should be able to have the catheter out tomorrow, mmm, pain I guess but then I'm truly on the mend. Might be out on Friday!

One thing about being in hospital is that you see very clearly that you are not alone in the world of pain or disability, it's a great leveller and enhumbler if there be such an word. It's not an experience anybody would choose but it undeniably and  unavoidably engenders empathy. One day Abbortt and Crapsmell Newman will have benign prostatitis too, and I would guess then that they discover humanity, because they obviously have yet to do so.    

Thanks again and again to all you beaut Swordsfolks who have wished me so well; I hope you too, all others who have medical problems especially, have a great day.



August 8. 2012 10:23 AM


Psyclaw said
. . . the use of dishwashers, washing machines, pool filters, clothes dryers, showers, vacuuming, charging the electric car, and  power hungry tools can be limited to any other time rather than the 2pm-8pm time slot.

The prices charged by our supplier are 9.6cents (Off-Peak), 16.4 cents (Shoulder) and 40.6 cents (Peak) for each KwH. There is an obvious incentive to avoid as much Peak usage as possible.

Wow. Great information! Peak is >4x as expensive as base rate!
I can just see the electricity companies trumpeting that! Thanks PC!


August 8. 2012 11:05 AM


Hi Ad & Everybody

Before Twitterverse, I would like to tell Jaycee "You are a Delight" a valuable asset to TPS.    I love your posts.
Thankyou for your bright and cheery compliment.  We really are so lucky to have "The Political Sword" thankyou Mr Astra kind Sir.


Melbourne Press Club‏
The Future of investigative journalism, from some of Melb's best investigative journos. Livestreamed today from 1pm. http://bit.ly/PfROTo

The Daily Telegraph‏
Qld nurses rally over 'dangerous' changes http://bit.ly/MLAyGs

Askgerbil Now‏
Greg Hunt: "poles and wires over built to deal with relatively few days of extreme energy use" news.brisbanetimes.com.au/.../...120614-20az2.html #carbontax #auspol

Kristin Moore‏
So electricity prices have increased by 50% in last 2 years, but it's the fault of the carbon tax which came in a month ago? #abbottlogic

Edzones CC‏
@OzFacts @latikambourke My electricity started rising from the time @barrfarrell took office over the last 3.5 years it's almost tripled

Transcript of PM Julia Gillard on ABC AM this morning discussing the cost of electricity in the power industry www.tveeder.com/byrange #auspol

Deb it's in LNP DNA to wreck ppl's lives by sackin them then waste $ on a picnic RT @DebKilroy: This is just disgusting

The BBG ‏
Exclusive: Despite knifing jobs, the LNP Governmant is forking out for posh ... Herald Sun news.google.com/.../url://www.heraldsun.com.au/.../exclusive-despite-knifing-jobs-the-lnp-governmant @Can_do_Campbell @QLDOnline
Exclusive: Despite knifing jobs, the LNP Government is forking out for posh picnic Diner en Blanc

Patients put 'at risk' in Newman Govt Queensland Health budget changes | The Courier-Mail #qldpol #NewmanLied2Qld http://bit.ly/OXyVID

Public sector stance 'balanced' says Treasurer Tim Nicholls #qldpol #NewmanLied2Qld www.brisbanetimes.com.au/.../...0120807-23s6d.html via @brisbanetimes

Questions, guilt plague public service survivors : View from the Inside #qldpol www.brisbanetimes.com.au/.../...0120807-23s5d.html via @brisbanetimes #NewmanLied2Qld

Van park sale puts Fraser Coast residents in limbo | Fraser Coast Chronicle www.frasercoastchronicle.com.au/.../ #qldpol

Chris Johnson
Campbell Newman buggers smart state policy, clears National Parks for rev-heads: http://bit.ly/OXHQd3 Rocks and crops nostalgia grabs LNP?

Ken Travers‏
Another Buswell portfolio #fail but with help from #Barnett & #Porter State gets ratings warnings - The West Australian au.news.yahoo.com/.../

LNP preference for personal abuse over civil discourse is very disturbing. Now commonplace. www.abc.net.au/.../4184772?section=wa via @Gweneth01

graeme thomas‏
“@abcnewsNSW: NSW Govt FOI charges 'extraordinary' http://bit.ly/Msbq6i” @Dargan66 @WCrevolt @WCVictimsdiary

Warning on PM's power play

With electricity prices soaring in recent years, many of the states are now trying to blame the federal govt ,... http://fb.me/1wT4CjHOq

Marian Rumens‏
Poll in #BrisbaneTimes: Libs 11%-Labor 36%-Greens 10%-Katter's Australia Party 36%-One Nation 0%-Independents 2%-Others


August 8. 2012 11:11 AM

Ad astra

Hi Lyn
What an interesting and informative set of links you have given us this morning.  I have saved those related to the electricity price debate for future reference, as I’m sure it will continue.  Julia Gillard was wise to pre-empt the inevitable accusation that the increased prices are due to the carbon tax, an accusation that is still being made despite all the evidence to the contrary.  Of course, the Coalition rulebook reassures Liberals that since truth is irrelevant, they can say whatever they like.

As TT says, you not only pick out for us the items of contemporary relevance, you also have the knack of picking the key sentences that encapsulate each piece, to accompany the link.  Thank you.

Ad astra

August 8. 2012 11:32 AM

Ad astra

Hi Lyn
Your Twitterverse is a great collection of items that show the growing dismay with Can Do.  It is all grist to the Labor mill.

Thanks for the notice of the Melbourne Press Club address on the future of investigative journalism.

Ad astra

August 8. 2012 11:38 AM

Tom of Melbourne

Someone might explain what the purpose of the carbon tax is, if not to increase the price of energy supplied by traditional power. It is apparently a price mechanism (ie increase) that has the intention of encouraging more frugal use, and to allow alternative sources of power generation to be more competitively priced (in relative terms).

The premise is higher prices results in lower consumption. Lower price increases consumption. Why is Gillard seeking to introduce price changes that are counter to the intention of the carbon price/tax?

In short, states are increasing prices, which is also the intention of the federal government.

Tom of Melbourne

August 8. 2012 11:39 AM


DMW @11:53

I think you hit on some of the reasons why Rudd was asked to step down.

I think Julia has done her very best to get the message out. But once the MSM war began government messages became opinion driven with an emphasis on negativity, and the opposition (including the MSM) believed, and still do, that they can bring down the government. They want the status quo, what they are used to. I love that the third world mining countries are looking to us to help them get a fairer share of their countries resources. Go Julia!

The media landscape has changed very quickly. I think DMW you are trying to blame Labor for not seeing the unseeable? That miners would use their incredible wealth to try to sway public opinion. That Labor would end up with a minority government. That TAbbott would be an unprincipled out right liar and spin merchant.

Hindsight is just that.  


August 8. 2012 11:44 AM


One thing about being in hospital is that you see very clearly that you are not alone in the world of pain or disability, it's a great leveller and enhumbler if there be such an word. It's not an experience anybody would choose but it undeniably and  unavoidably engenders empathy.

You're absolutely right there, TT!

Now that I know you're on the mend I can share my own good news.  I saw my surgeon for my six week check yesterday.  After X rays and a chat he removed my splint! I am walking quite well indoors without support  but I still need a stick up and down steps and pavements.  His physio has given me exercises to improve flexibility since I am still a bit creaky, but I won't need further supervision if my improvement continues at its current pace.

Here's some good news for us all.  Bones heal at the same rate whether you are nine or ninety!  The only variable in recovery is in people's level of determination to get moving.  

I've been extending my little walks around the neighbourhood since I got home four weeks back. Tacker seemed to understand the need for little and often and very slow.  He stayed very close, kept stopping to look back and check on me.  He seemed very interested in my lack of splint when I got home yesterday!  We moved a bit faster and went a bit further last night in the dusk.  He was positively skipping along this morning, as we did even better alongside sunny rain washed gardens where he could run ahead,  stop, sniff around like he used to and then frolic back to re-join me. Poppies are appearing already. Soon they'll be out everywhere.  As will we!


August 8. 2012 12:07 PM

James Adelaide


The lie only has to be maintained until next federal polling day.  

Lets hope that it is too long...

James Adelaide

August 8. 2012 12:15 PM


Just a suggestion here - personalising politicians such as "Can Do" for Newman, "Joh" for Bjelke-Petersen, "Honest" or "Little" Johnnie for Howard, reduces them to friendly people who are close enough to you so that you will ignore their little "foibles" such as trampling all over democracy, human rights, equality and so on.

"CanBull", "Fatty O'Barrell" and so on are only childish.  It is much better that people use their surnames only to take any perception of emotion out of the discussion.  Even if not intended, the lack of emotion will only add gravitas to your argument.


August 8. 2012 12:17 PM


Thanks for the great links Lyn!

I agree Q&A has had its day, its tiresome.

Lots on Electricity prices. Go Julia.

What will it be like under and Abbott government? Centre-left will be wiped off the map that's for sure. Its wiped off Qld, but great to see people rally. Makes me mad when I know most of them must have voted for Can-do, honestly believing a Liberal government would make things better. Different yes....better no.


August 8. 2012 12:18 PM

James Adelaide


The newspapers of William Randolph Hearst were very influential.  They fomented the Spanish-American War of 1898.  The USA attacked because his newspapers whipped up a fever of public outrage about a US battleship being sunk in Havana harbour.

It later turnd out to have been sunk by an internal explosion.  Battleships blew up  with monotonous regularity (@ every two years)  between 1890 and 1910.  Propellants were unstable.

USA held the Phillipines as a colony until the 1930s or 1950s (depnding on how you assess independance), and cuba until the 1950s.

(Michelle Grattan moment)
Rupert only managed Iraq, partly occupied, but control disputed.  Mission failed, country not safe for corporations.

James Adelaide

August 8. 2012 12:21 PM


This is only available free for the next 24hrs a must read on a frustrating question.

Comment: The Australian Solution  Waleed Aly @TheMonthly
There was a Pacific Solution, a Malaysia Solution and, fleetingly, until someone thought to ask the Timorese, an East Timor Solution. But what exactly is the problem? I’m not asking rhetorically. It’s a serious question, perhaps the most serious question in the entire debate surrounding asylum seekers arriving by boat, and yet it is barely asked. The axioms of the public conversation simply hold that asylum seekers on boats are a problem and that their existence should cease. At the same time, all protagonists sagely concede the problem is devilishly complex.


August 8. 2012 12:25 PM


Lady in Red

The carbon "tax" issue also looks so clear in hindsight.

You might recall that in a presser way back in February 2011 when the ETS was announced and the necessary intro period of government-fixed-price was included in the announcement  (as the stand-by mechanism whilst the market infrastructure was organised and developed)  a journo argued that this was a "tax".

Not wanting to be sidetracked by semantics, JG replied WTTE "well if you want to call it a tax, call it a tax". This had the status of an aside by the PM.

At the time she did not foresee what devastating use Abbott would dishonestly make of the word "tax", nor did she foresee that the MSM would never challenge him on it.

Any fool with 20/20 hindsight can now see that that aside by the PM as she tried to be not put off topic when she was announcing the ETS has cost the government tonnes of bad publicity.

Such is life, when you can't tell the future.

Of course so many are now wise after the event and refer to it as a major mistake. Such observers would also back many winners at the race course if they had access to Sunday's papers on Saturday morning.

Fools and wankers and anti-JG by nature!


August 8. 2012 01:05 PM


Hi LadyInRed,
thanks for the feedback you have prompted some thinking for me - me thinking can be dangerous I know but I promise to be careful Smile

In horse racing parlance Ms Gillard certainly started with a lot of lead in her saddle bags.Some has been jettisoned and some 'helpful' buggers have been loading heaps more back in.

On 'blaming' Labor for not seeing the unseeable I will disagree about Toxic Tony, he very much existed when JG became PM. I can accept that they and many others might not have realised what a bottomless cesspit of toxicity the daily Mr Abbott now proves to be. Ad in particular had written at length on that matter for some time before then.

The rest I will take on notice and ponder because as Revvy Kevvy would have said 'Gotta Zip'  Frown arrrghhhh.


August 8. 2012 01:47 PM

Tom of Melbourne

I’ve noticed an interesting discussion here recently between rational analysis and wishful thinking.

Rational analysis wins because it doesn’t default to ”you’re wrong, wrong, WRONG, and it’s all the media’s fault anyway!!!”

In the same context, the wishful thinkers find it easy to simply characterise the “it is a tax”...”no it’s not”...”it is so...” as another media misrepresentation.

It’s again not that simple. The public is deeply disillusioned with Gillard and the government because-
•  Gillard promised to build “community consensus” in advance of introducing a system. She didn’t bother to attempt this.
•  She said “the reform would fail” without community consensus. She was right, and now is getting the experience of the failure.
•  She promised to set up a huge system of consultation to build community consensus, as a politically expedient way of taking the heat out of the issue.
•  She then reneged on this, for political expedience.
•  She committed to building a policy throughout this term and not introducing a change until just before the next election was due. She didn’t do this.
•  ...and she said there would be “no carbon tax”

There are far, far more issues involved in the public disaffection than simply the last point above.

But the wishful thinkers prefer to wish this wasn’t the case. It’s easier to just “blame the media”.

Tom of Melbourne

August 8. 2012 02:03 PM


Hi TT, hope your surgery went well and to schedule!  I too have had many surgeries and, like Psyclaw, have only this advice to give.  In the immortal words of Edina (AbFab), when having a hangnail fixed:  "I want totaly sensory deprivation.  And backup drugs!"

Pity about the morphine allergy but there are plenty of drugs.  My personal favourite hospital dose was sodium pentothal with valium for a bone biopsy but that was some years ago.  They are getting very stingey with the happy drugs Smile

Anyway, hope you are on the end poste haste!


August 8. 2012 02:19 PM


Hi Lovely Patricia!

Well you've been having a long slow recuperation but isn't it good to have Dog on your side! I remember when I had heart sugery my dear since-departed Dog Bunsen was the person I missed most, of course J**** and other Human people were free to visit but not Bunny, Oh I cried for happy when I came home and I'm sure he did too.

Yes they look at you with concern so obvious, so patient,

Oh Dam I have to interrupt this, sorry, bit trauma, don't ask, sorry, just keep improving.  


August 8. 2012 02:32 PM


Hi Ad

I am pleased . Thought you might like to know about the Press Club on Journalism .  The other good news is, with all this information about electricity prices along with Julia Gillard’s press conference yesterday and again today, now the public should be more informed on where these exorbitant  prices are coming from.  Won’t this blunt Abbott’s argument  somewhat.

Mr Abbott is in Darwin today helping with their State election, of course he says (assuming LNP will win) results of  this election will reflect on the Government.  

Abc says Tony Abbott has the Bull by the Horns. ABC slow he has had the Bull by the Horns for nearly 3 years .

Patricia thankyou for sharing with us. Great news to hear of your progress.  I’ve been wondering how you are mending after your horrific accident. Tacker is very intelligent.

Psyclaw I don’t know much about the Smart Meters your post @ 9.56am   was superb .

Psycaw said: “Swordsters who do not have smart meters should perhaps contact their supplier to see if it is available to them, and if not why not and when will it be!”

We have Solar panels and have not paid any electricity for 15 months, always a delight to open the account and it say’s credit, I always say Wow!

Here is a few more links:-

How dodgy forecasts inflate your energy bill
If any further evidence were needed to demonstrate how the power companies, both state-owned and private, have been foisting unnecessary price hikes on their customers, it can be found in the industry's own energy forecasts

Powering the truth in the electricity debate, Alan Kohler
It's true that regulators and suppliers have not done well in meeting the peak demand from air conditioners on hot days. It's also true that power distributors have been putting off necessary upgrades and now have to do them in a rush.

Abbott takes bull by horns on NT campaign trail

Latika Bourke ‏
Tony Abbott asked to guarantee power prices will reduce if he scraps the carbon tax. He only guarantees he'll get rid of the carbon tax.

Tony Abbott continues his nasty, lying tour of the country: .

@vexnews prior to 1 july was impossible for carbon price 2 cause increases. Abbott trying 2 blur distinction between past present & future


August 8. 2012 02:36 PM


On 'blaming' Labor for not seeing the unseeable I will disagree about Toxic Tony, he very much existed when JG became PM.

immediately followed by

I can accept that they and many others might not have realised what a bottomless cesspit of toxicity the daily Mr Abbott now proves to be.

Now where was I?  On the northern side of the fence or the southern side? Toxic Tony was foreseeable and not forseeable. From racing parlance comes having a bet each way.

But on to the main issue.

Personally, I continue to be amazed and astonished day after day how blatantly and deeply and offensively  low the depths of Abbott's dishonourable conduct can go. And I learn more as each day goes by just how unquestioning and supportive the MSM is about his behaviour.

"Mal Brough has been completely up-front about the Ashby matter" from last wek still remains on the record as the true characterisation of the events through which Brough, step by step, admitted his involvement. In saying this, Abbott calmly looked down the camera lens and used his most priestly voice to planfully recite a 101% falsehood, not one peep about it out of the media ever since. As I watched him, I thought "well this is such a blatant one .... I can forsee that the MSM will just have to ping him for once .... they have no choice, so blatant is this lie". My forseeability skills rating ..... zero.

Even though I knew how low he went with Bernie Banton I had no idea at that time what he would be doing and saying in August 2012 and nor did I have any idea that the media would stick together and allow him to do and say what he likes.

Put up your hand if you knew in December 2009 that the new LOTO would get a free advert on the TV every weeknight for the next two (+) years, wearing a fluoro or otherwise dressed up for his daily frolic and free kick? "I knew ! I knew !"  ....... liar!

Nor IMHO have I or anyone else a clue about what he is really capable of as PM.

But two things are for sure. If he becomes PM in 2013 and if I'm still around on this planet at that time, I will certainly be able to tell you all for sure how bad he was in 2014.

I promise to do so on New Years Day, January 1, 2015 at which time I'll be a great expert about the events of 2014.


August 8. 2012 02:38 PM


psyclaw & I have both referred to this statement by Gillard in the past couple of days You might recall that in a presser way back in February 2011 when the ETS was announced and the necessary intro period of government-fixed-price was included in the announcement  (as the stand-by mechanism whilst the market infrastructure was organised and developed)  a journo argued that this was a "tax".

Not wanting to be sidetracked by semantics, JG replied WTTE "well if you want to call it a tax, call it a tax". This had the status of an aside by the PM.

At the time she did not foresee what devastating use Abbott would dishonestly make of the word "tax", nor did she foresee that the MSM would never challenge him on it.{/quote]

psyclaw's take on this is [quote]Any fool with 20/20 hindsight can now see that that aside by the PM as she tried to be not put off topic when she was announcing the ETS has cost the government tonnes of bad publicity.

My take on it is that with Abbott's habit of taking no prisoners has been known since he was Howard's Health Minister.  Surely Gillards media people would have "workshopped" the interview prior to the event - and with a element fo the community already referring to the Carbon Price as a tax it's a given to be asked.  So why wasn't Gillard schooled on how to avoid the noose that has been around her neck ever since?  Demonstration that while the media will not assist them, the fault is shared with the ALP & Government not selling their message.


August 8. 2012 03:02 PM


I'm so glad to see you have the recognition you deserve AA, being shown on the true MSM IA you should be rightly chuffed well done mate!
I think we will all find as time goes by that the speech yesterday from Julia will go down as the decisive turning point. It was political brilliance & here is how.
There was a looming problem on the horizon that I can see coming & that was [& probably still is] the free kick the whinging wingnut & that is the winter power bills, always the highest, the wingnut was about to grab onto that fact & kick the living shit out of it.
Yesterday after the PMs brilliant speech she was followed by several high profile people in the industry admitting to the media that the majority of all increases in the past 4 yrs, now & into the future are indeed due to the other costs NOT the price on pollution that they now have to pay.
She didn't just cut off the wingnut off at the knees she cut him off at the balls.
So now we will all witness just how much the murdocracy runs things, after such an informative speech how! can the media say anything different ? unless they are told! to, we shall wait & see.

TT All's looking good for you so far mate, the removal of a catheter is true relief. Here is more good cheers for you from one short arse 4'11' to another. To all others it might make some sense as it did the Ad Astra.
My nom de plume.


Lyn you are a real treasure of info like other have said you are indispensable & a nice person too as an added bonus.

[sorry 2353 I can't & won't refer to him in any other way till HE starts acting like an adult & not a spoilt brat throwing a tantrum cause he didn't get the keys to the lodge]


August 8. 2012 03:17 PM


Oh I too have my new gravitar.
@ LadyinRed

I agree Q&A has had its day, its tiresome. I agree & have for sometime, I tend to save it on the set top box that way & can fast forward when there is a lieberal on it, I know what they are going to say & see no point in the needless rise in blood pressure.

I couldn't believe it when Tony Jones cut off one of the female guests by staying " your being too political" WTF

I suppose he should have just said your being too anti LNP & remove all doubts as where his loyalties are.


August 8. 2012 03:40 PM


Howard's Health Minister.

Remember him saying this on his refusal to allow RU486 in Australia

It doesn't sit well with my christen beliefs & my right to life ethic to allow this drug into Australia "women should be responsible for the out comes of their nocturnal behavior, not the government with a morning after pill"

Why any woman would vote for this prick is totally beyond me & I have to say I'm disgusted with being a male of late. to be honest.


August 8. 2012 04:13 PM


Good to see that the real reason for power increases are starting to get talked about.  [url=www.theglobalmail.org/.../]Ellen Fanning[/url] covered this very well in February 2012 - but only in The Global Mail, so nobody read it.

Well worth a read - I wonder if JG stumbled across it?


August 8. 2012 05:09 PM


Tall Turkey,

so good to hear you are recovering. Nor have you lost your sense of humour.


I too read Fanning's article in the Global Mail and wondered why it wasn't covered in MSM. Now we need someone to get the message out in a very simple format on why the NBN is so vital.

On a side note, the Western Australian finance minister's slur on our PM referring her to a cane toad, well he might have something there; they are survivors in a hostile land, hard to eradicate and they wont lie down and die. Maybe we should be saying the PM is as tough as a cane toad.


August 8. 2012 05:24 PM



As I pointed out in my large number of interchanges with your sidekick yesterday and the day before, it's all a matter of degree.

I'm glad for you that you can accurately forsee what Abbott is capable of if he becomes PM.

Apparently you know which (at the time trivial) events or words he will pick up on, and the degree and extent to which he will with no integrity or scruples hammer the government with them and at the same time experiencing absolutely no scrutiny by the press.

You apparently know which ones he will use for a day or so and then discard, which ones will be used for months, which ones will become election issues, and which ones the MSM will let go through to the keeper. Good for you. Maybe you can make a bob or two out of your special skill.

As a mere mortal, I know I will be unaware of some of them until each particular piece of nastiness begins to unfold. But later, in retrospect, and with 20/20 hindsight, I know I'll be right up there with the rest of the mere mortal fraternity    ..... so wise after the event.

I'll be able to say with great confidence at that stage "silly JG  ... why didn't she see that coming?" and if I want to be dishonest I will also be able to say at that stage "I could see that coming .... why couldn't she?" or "why wasn't Gillard schooled on how to avoid the noose that has been around her neck".

And If I wanted to do so, writing such put downs would be an excellent strategy to smear her on the blogosphere and do my little bit to ensure she was not re-elected.


August 8. 2012 05:25 PM



The problem with calling Gillard a cane toad is they are ugly slimy creatures that only came to Australia due to some really bad policy.  Some may debate the policy that got her the Prime Minster-ship, but she is hardly ugly and slimy!  

Some animals are developing strategies to overcome their poison glands (some birds are learning to flip them over and attack the underside) and apparently the learned behaviour is spreading to other species as well.  There is also the possibility that a eradication plan will commence soon.  I can't remember if it is a virus or releasing toads with some genetic engineering (either way that is a really good policy).

Maybe we should be calling Abbott a cane toad, there is some with strategies to neutralise him which they are passing on and there is (hopefully) a plan to eliminate him.


August 8. 2012 05:26 PM

Ad astra

Thank you for your kind remarks.  The media in the middle got quite a good run on Independent Australia, a lot of hits and thirteen comments.

I see you have got your new Gravatar up.  How did you manage to do that?  It looks impressive.

I think you may have been here before; if not, welcome to the TPS family.  Do come again.

Thank you for the Global Mail links on the cost of energy.  I have bookmarked both for reference.

I do like ‘tough as a cane toad’.  I have a feeling that both Coalition politicians and some in the media are understanding that Julia Gillard is tough and resolute, and to use Tony Abbott’s memorable words: ‘she won’t lie down and die’.  I hope the Rudd supporters eventually get that message too.

Ad astra

August 8. 2012 06:58 PM


Why any woman would vote for this prick is totally beyond me & I have to say I'm disgusted with being a male of late. to be honest.

Little Grasshopper Be not ashamed of your fellow Man,
rather be proud that you are not a Cane Toad like Abbortt.  


August 8. 2012 07:19 PM


Tom @1:47

If I remember rightly (and I am fairly sure I do) the citizen consensus was an election promise?

Surely you agree that after the election the landscape had changed. To form a minority government an agreement was made with the Greens to start pricing carbon, they (the Greens)would never have agreed to a peoples forum for consesus. Perhaps what could have been done, once again in hindsight, is to fully explain to the electorate under what conditions a government was formed. Though, to be honest, myself not being stupid, I worked out that a consesus was no longer needed. Clearly others see this as a broken promise - how so?

Who would have thought that MSM would use something that was quite obvious (no longer needing the forum) to beat Julia with, they let Tabbott get away with far, far worse? And before you screech, Tabbott is not in government, that does not excuse him when he is busy presenting himself as a government ready to go.....not in the making.....ready to go!


I do have to agree with psyclaw, it would appear you have contradicted yourself in the same paragraph with your "I disagree" and "I can accept" perhaps you need to start using the word 'however'? Maybe?


Fierce gravatar!


August 8. 2012 07:21 PM


Hi 2353, Shirley
re Cane Toads, I take 2353's point that they are ugly slimy creatures but another aspect is that the Queensland State of Origin Rugby League team has as its' mascot the cane toad.

I am sure even a good number of NSW (Cockroaches) supporters would acknowledge that the canetoads are a highly successful team with much integrity.

I am sure that some smart people within the government will be able to workshop/wargame that and turn the tables on that fellow from WA.


August 8. 2012 07:22 PM


Talk Turkey

It sounds as if things are going good for you, home by Friday, well done, and Brucie Bilby sure did the trick with Ms Grumpy.  I still treasure my copy. Smile


Wow, you have certainly come on with your injury.  It is great news. Smile


I love your gravitar, is it Warf out of Star Trek?


I was angry about the cane toad insult, but you made me laugh at look at it differently, well done and thank you.


I agree with all your input.  You have a great way of expressing yourself.


Have now got my bookmarks fill to read, probably on the weekend when things are quiet again.  That was great reading all those twitter responses to Ad Astra's post.  You two are a match made in cyberspace, well done.


August 8. 2012 07:39 PM


Lyn quoted Marian Rumens‏:
Poll in #BrisbaneTimes: Libs 11%-Labor 36%-Greens 10%-Katter's Australia Party 36%-One Nation 0%-Independents 2%-Others

"If an election were held this weekend . . ! ." the entire LNP would put in a chaff bag and dumped in the Arafura Sea
and if it drifted back to Oz we would send in the Navy  . . . and so on.

Crapsmell Newman - How childish eh! - will never recover his credibility, and he has gone far to ensuring a Labor victory Australia-wide in 2013.


August 8. 2012 07:51 PM


Gravel said

You two [Tweety Lyn and Ad astra] are a match made in cyberspace . . .

I wish I'd thought of saying that! Smile Wonderfully put Gravel!

TPS CW IA Twitter and some other blogs are absolutely vital to Labor's victory in 2013. We are gathering strength and must set about finding ways of acting in concert.

The Bloggers, United, will always be re-tweeted!  


August 8. 2012 08:01 PM


How did you manage to do that?
I climbed a local mountain [sent an email] & talked to the holder of all knowledge, a very wise man & he said "Be patient Grass Hopper things take time maybe a day or so", so I did & low I behold it happened Smile

Nope not Warf tis me, no its supposed to be a generic Klingon. When I figured out my name & tried to pronounce it, I thought it sounded like a Klingon the rest is as they say is history.


Starting to feel sick now, better try to go back to sleep. One Mincing Poodle, two . .
Too funny mate.

  Thanks mate, the white/grey haired twits we are seeing on the media do give us a bad name, now to see the little prick Ackerman called our PM a bikie moll, what the hell next maybe we should start calling the whinging wing nut the walking Abbort..ion.
Sorry people I know it crosses many lines.


August 8. 2012 08:30 PM



Klingon,  You do look scary but I like you.  I think you have a kind heart.  Thankyou for your comment in your post @ 3.02pm that's so nice of you.

Your Gravatar sure adds in depth colour to our page, livens it up in other words.

Love your posts.  



August 8. 2012 08:44 PM


LadyInRed @ 7:19 PM,
I did type my comment @ 1:05 PM very much off the top of the head and failed to remember that, like 2353, I have to very carefully proof read every syllable, dot every tee and cross every eye otherwise, the pedantic posting police will come out with sirens blaring and lights blazing.

One of the difficulties with this form of communication is that we cannot eyeball one and other, so, we miss a lot of the nuance that is conveyed by body language and other subtle forms of face to face communication.

After rereading what I wrote about fifteen times, yeah, ok, I guess there was the probability that some would find it contradictory but as I wrote it I am having difficulty seeing it as totally contradictory.

Gees it's tough being a human bean some days.


August 8. 2012 08:56 PM


DMW - and secondly, this blog software doesn't have an edit feature - something I would use often when I don't proof read every syllable, dot every I and cross every T Cool

And even when I have the time to "Preview" long posts - I still miss something - grrr!

You're right about the human been too Laughing


August 8. 2012 09:21 PM



"I did type my comment @ 1:05 PM very much off the top of the head and failed to remember that, like 2353, I have to very carefully proof read every syllable, dot every tee and cross every eye otherwise, the pedantic posting police will come out with sirens blaring and lights blazing."

There are many daily examples of communication when "eyeballing" is not available. So a bare minimum standard in written communication is necessary. Such a minimum standard requires internal consistency and a logical relationship between premises and conclusions. Failing this standard simply results in ineffective communication.

Factual premises and honesty are additional bonuses on blogsites.

You and your perennial sidekick could always do quick email interchanges to proof read each other's posts ....... you seem to usually be around at the same time echoing each other so he is likely to be available whenever needed. That would keep the pedantic posting police away.

You might note that I have not referred to "dotting tees" or "crossing eyes" or "syllables". They are the least of problems when it comes to effective written communication...... straw men.


August 8. 2012 09:28 PM


I too read Fanning's article in the Global Mail and wondered why it wasn't covered in MSM.

A little inconvenient for carbon price bashers, Shirley.

The hard lesson, hopefully learned, take the public into your confidence, lay out the nuts and bolts, describe the plan and then get on with it.

Couldn't agree more, DMW. I think this has been another big mistake.

I guess fear of the inevitable sound and fury emanating from the usual suspects inhibits that sensible approach, but like you I think taking the public into their confidence is a good idea.

My worry is that it may now be too late to engage the public.


August 8. 2012 09:58 PM


As your faithful sidekick I need to let you know something.

I think a brainfart exploded again around 9:21 PM.


August 8. 2012 10:16 PM

Truth Seeker

Psyclaw, I think you may have inadvertently discovered the problem with DMW et al, they are not one eyed, but rather cross eyed, making it almost impossible to see facts or the truth even though they might be right in front of them!

Truth Seeker

August 8. 2012 10:17 PM


OK I'll tell you a joke and then explain my trauma today.

Several blokes sitting around in a pub telling Painful Experience stories.

Michael tells of the excruciating pain when he trod on a Stonefish . . .OOOhhh the blokes say, and buy him a round.  

Ian recounts the time his beard got caught in a mangle and ripped it all out by the roots . . .  OOOOHHHHH the fellers say, and buy him a brandy.

Each bloke seems to have a worse story that the one before.

But one bloke Jason is sitting there absolutely unmoved, not a sound, just looking sour and contemptuous. The other fellers start to get a bit p'd off with him, What, haven't you ever had anything painful happen to you, Jason, or don't you care about others' pain? demands Norm, and the other blokes say, Yeah, how come you sneer at such awful experiences? What makes you so superior?

Jason sort of snarls, Painful experiences? You call them painful experiences? Dog albitey, I've had at least two experiences that make those look like a slap with a wet bus ticket!

He makes no attempt to explain, just buys his own drinks, keeping to himself.  The other blokes start to get quite annoyed.

Well come on then Bigmouth they say, tell us just one to top any of ours!

Jason takes a deep breath and begins to tell his story:

OK ya bastards, you asked for it:

See I used to be a rabbit trapper, I'd peg my traps to the ground, bury the chain and trap so the rabbits couldn't see it, set the trap and camouflage the jaws with leaves . . . It was all really well hidden.

Well one day as I was doing my rounds I was took short, so I drops me dacks and does a dump right there, only problem, it landed right on top of one of me traps . . . Trap leapt in the air and grabbed me by the balls![/i]

OOOOOOOOOOOHHHHHHHHH! the blokes chorus in sympathy, acknowledging that that indeed eclipsed any of the previous stories. They buy him a double Scotch which he sinks moodily and relapses into silence. The whole bunch of blokes too are silent, thinking about the terrible pain it must have caused Jason.

Then Tom remembers, he says, Well yeah that was awful but you said TWO experiences . . . .

Nahhh says Jason grimly, I'm not going there, that memory's too painful altogether, anyway, you wouldn't want to know!

'Course that just whets the blokes' interest more, they say Look Jase, we'll buy you a whole bottle of Wild Turkey if you tell us!

The offer is too good for Jason to refuse . . .
You wanna know the second story? You really wanna know? OK but don't say you didn't ask for it . . .

The second story? The second story !

Well . . . That was when I ran out of chain!


OK. Well. For more than a fortnight (which is much longer than usual) I have had to 'wear' a catheter, due to the accidental rupturing of my bladder. During waking hours a smallish bag is sufficient, as I can empty it often. It conveniently (!) straps to my leg, permitting me to walk around (sort of), but during sleepy-byes time a much bigger bag on a much longer tube must be attached in tandem with the smaller one, in order to have the necessary capacity.

Since my proper operation finally happened yesterday I have had to wear that big bag all the time, to cope with the gallons of saline drip (truly!) with which my bladder has been being continually flushed of somewhat bloody pee . . . and even then it must be emptied every hour or so.

Well today that same Jason came to visit me, I was feeling really well, sitting up with the big bag hooked up to the side of the bed by an inbuilt plastic hook.

But I was so used after so long to being able to walk around, I FORGOT THAT I WAS ATTACHED, AND I GOT UP AND WALKED AROUND THE END OF THE BED . . !!!!!

It was OK till I ran out of tube . . .


The tube doesn't pull out, there is a bulbous inflated balloon inside the bladder, but it did get jerked fairly firmly though not extremely.

[It could have been worse: My nurse Jess just recounted demented patients who HAVE ripped the balloon right out through their dick, and I tell ya, however demented they were before, they would have been a whole lot more so after.]

But in my case anyway,Huge pain, lots of blood, both through and around the catheter tube . . . Scary too.

But it seems I have done no real damage . . . My urologist doesn't know about it yet, (h'mmmm), but Dog be praised, my pee has returned to a very pretty Rose colour, and the pain has retreated a lot. Whew.

Now, [i]who's buying me the case of Southern Comfort?

Not, please, Wild Turkey  . . ! I'm wild enough as it is.



August 8. 2012 10:21 PM


I must apologise it wasn't a brainfart at all, it was an emanation from the font of all wisdom


August 8. 2012 10:30 PM


Swordsfolks I have come to the long-considered conclusion that the least offensive names for male and female genital organs are simply Dick and Fanny. In fact not offensive at all, they have to be called something apart from the medical terms, and most of the rest seem deliberately obscene.

I even started a cartoon once, The Adventures of Dick & Fanny, but it was a bit too OTT even then . . . Smile

Be sure I never mean to be really obscene. But risque, cool.


August 8. 2012 10:53 PM


Adelaide Girl, Jane, BSA Bob, Jason, all other Crowies in cawing distance of Adelaide, soon we must get together for a Moot Munch, whaddya reckon?


August 8. 2012 11:54 PM

42 long

Sad that it takes  a lot of time to get things  into reality. Dicks and Fanny's is about right. But you need a good sense of humour to deal with all that we are all a bit of a slave to eroticism. Natures Trick upon us to ensure procreation and the continuation of the species. A constant tussle between mind and philosophy and basic instincts.. Our mind has probably outgrown our basic needs to survive and we address life in a more esoteric way. Art only prospers and surfaces when the society has enough extra energy over basic needs to survive  to indulge it.

42 long

August 8. 2012 11:57 PM

Per Ardua

DMW - 2353
May I make a suggestion that you exchange your snide bitchy personal asides elsewhere rather than pollute this fine forum. It's fourth form stuff and boring - FFS grow up!!

Per Ardua

August 9. 2012 12:08 AM


Per Ardua
I am sure you are equally as offended by the sly and underhanded commenter @ 12:25 PM, 2:36 PM, 5:24 PM  & 9:21 PM today.


August 9. 2012 12:15 AM


oops it is already tomorrow


August 9. 2012 12:30 AM


DMW counsels against the use of ad hominems:

"Your response is a graphic example of why political discourse has plumbed the depths that it has in that rather than debate the merits or otherwise of the argument you resort to name calling." (4/8/2012 @ 10.40pm)"

Now DMW uses ad hominems:

"your own one eyed view of the world"
(6/8/2012 @ 10.28am)

"I am guessing that you trust your gut feelings but pray tell do you check first to see if those feelings are all piss and wind?" (6/8/2012 @6.15pm)

"You use the cop out of not flogging a dead horse as a cover for not explaining how you jumped to some of the delusions that you have." (6/8/2012 @11.24pm

" ...... otherwise the pedantic posting police will come out with sirens blaring and lights blazing."
(8/8/2012 @8.44pm)

"I think a brainfart exploded again around 9:21 PM." (8/8/2012 @ 9.58pm)

"I must apologise it wasn't a brainfart at all, it was an emanation from the font of all wisdom" (8/8/2012 @10.21pm)

The last two are all class!

"Don't use ad hominems" Vs "Here are some hominems from me".

I'm sure that somewhere in the English language is a word to describe this type of conduct.


August 9. 2012 12:41 AM

Per Ardua

Please don't assume what offends me.  You have been called out on your wishy washy obfuscatory debating practices and you lost.  Get over it.

Per Ardua

August 9. 2012 07:21 AM



Is there ANYBODY listening? I didn’t think so…lukechircop ,The Blogical Voice
Cafe Whispers and The Political Sword have stood the test of time, and generate far more discussion than profit-driven blogs like Crikey or Annabel Crabb’s blog on The Drum. While many fear that the growth of the blogging community will spell the end for traditional print journalism, perhaps this is the price they pay for abandoning the people they claim to serve.

Jacksonville 20: A Lawler unto themselves, Independent Australia
Kathy Jackson’s determination to make sure that evidence is not tampered with during the investigation. This may be why she chose to deliver boxes of documents to the FWA investigator, Terry Nassios, herself. Not to access them, tamper with them, or to remove any of them – heaven forfend! – but just to make sure that they all arrived safe and sound. Good thinking. What a good Samaritan

Communication Breakdown, Peter Wicks, Wixxy Leaks
In no way whatsoever, would I jump to the conclusion, that the Vice President of Fair Work Australia had illegally accessed the personnel files of his fiancés union, during the federal investigation of his fiancés union by the organisation he is Vice President of, with the intention of influencing the outcome. Pfff, no way. Not someone Tony Abbott himself appointed, after all Tony looks for talent in all the right places

The bully boy motif returns , Gary Sauer-Thomson, Public Opinion
It's politics based on Abbott's usual tactic of misrepresentation and beatup to deepen the partisan divide. What the Finkelstein inquiry recommended was a News Media Council, appointed via an arms' length process which would be mostly funded by industry but with some government funding, and would run in a very similar fashion to the present, industry created, Australian Press Council. As Margaret Simons points out:

Guess what? The Liberals want an election!, Miglo, Café Whispers
So far we have calls for an election because of the carbon price, the 2012 Budget, The Slipper scandal, under-performing teachers, Nauru, border protection, migration, the Labor leadership challenge, Julia Gillard winning that challenge, no more distractions, the minority government and Craig Thomson. What on earth will they think of next?

In one sentence Abbott reveals what he thinks of women, Jennifer Wilson, No Place for Sheep
Reduced by whom? Who has reduced abortion to a question of the mother’s convenience? Well, according to Tony Abbott it must be women who have reduced abortion to a question of the mother’s convenience, presumably because:

How feasible is a guaranteed minimum income (crosspost from CT), John Quiggin
it’s useful to consider whether a basic income is feasible at all and, if so, what kinds of tax policies, and adjustments to other welfare policies, would be required to support it. I’ve considered the relatively easy case of a guaranteed minimum income, rather than a universal basic income paid to everyone, as advocated by Philippe von Parijs and others

Our unreasonably high dollar concerns the RBA. It is opening its mouth, Peter Martin
The Bank believes the dollar is soaring despite the lower prices because foreign investors have settled on Australia as a safe place to park their money.
A big part of yesterday’s Sydney board meeting was given over to discussing the high dollar and what - if anything - to do about it.

For true productivity gains, co-operate don't fight, Ross Gittins
There are plenty of people who've always hated the unions, and plenty who've always hated the bosses. All of us can be lured into playing that game but, in all our interests, we need to resist the temptation. It's self-indulgent at a time when we need to pull together.For industrial relations to become more co-operative, and hence more productive,

Sun in the sky, you know how I feel… Why @MargaretSimons is wrong about RDA , Only the Sangfroid
Simons — along with people like Jonathan Holmes, Chris Berg, the IPA trolls, and Tony Abbott — are outraged at the idea of a ‘hurt feelings’ test. 18C makes it unlawful to be frank and fearless with your freedom of speech which, of course, must be identical to the freedom to offend. The assumption is that 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act is a way for people with thin

Gillard Tackles Electricity Prices
Gillard said power prices have risen unsustainably because of over-investment that has driven up energy costs by 48% in the past four years. “And ordinary businesses and households have been entirely uncompensated for these significant cost increases

NBN corporate plan lands 2PM today, Renau LeMay, Delimeter
However, despite the ongoing and incessantly negative coverage of the NBN from Australia’s largely conservative mainstream media, it remains a fact that most Australians remain positive about the project and its aims, and I don’t expect anything NBN Co or Minister Conroy does or says today to make a real difference with respect to that. Broadly, Australians are happy with the NBN as long as it’s going ahead and they know they will get better broadband at some point

NBN Corporate Plan: The Gizmodo Liveblog
It’s at this point that the total capex cost — $44 billion — gets explicitly mentioned for the first time. You can bet THAT’s the figure that will be hammered (without explanation) by the news media. Peak government equity in the project will be $27.5 billion. Despite those shifts, Quigley notes the main financial goals haven’t changed.

How Much Road Can a Single NBN Build?, Michael Wyres
So Tony Abbott wants to take the money that will be allocated to the National Broadband Network (NBN) over the next 10 years – ($35b) – and “build some roads“?
Interesting. Possibly – (and almost certainly) – quite useful.  
Curiosity Geek‏
The total cost of the NBN will only buy you about 661 KM of road over 10 years. Pretty pathetic really Frown

NBN Co tips increased costs, 6-month delay, Josh Taylor, ZNet
The original corporate plan released in 2010 has been disregarded by the company, because the roll-out of the network was delayed due to delays in signing an AU$11 billion agreement with Telstra to decommission the copper network and lease ducts and pits to NBN Co for the roll-out . NBN Co is expected to begin construction to pass a total of 758,000 premises across Australia by the end of this year, but the overall roll-out of the network has been delayed by six months, to June 2021.
NBN Co Corporate Plan 2012-2015 released

"The assumptions and estimates in the 2010 business case have been reinforced or replaced with signed supply contracts, firm agreements, operational experience, and regulatory certainty," Senator Conroy said."It is the forecasts in this plan against which the progress of the NBN should be measured."

Australia - National Broadband Network - Analysis 2012, Paul Budde, Budde Com
so far the Opposition has not revealed its own NBN policy. Do they see this as essential infrastructure for the emerging digital economy, e-health, tele-education, internet of things, etc? Only when a vision has been arrived at can a strategic plan be generated. Without such a vision it is useless discussing technologies such as FttH, FttN, HFC, wireless, etc. You first need to know what you want to do with it.

Today’s Front Pages
Australia Newspaper Front Pages for 9 August 2012


August 9. 2012 07:45 AM

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LYN'S DAILY LINKS updated: www.thepoliticalsword.com/.../...-DAILY-LINKS.aspx

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August 9. 2012 07:46 AM



Great links again. Thanks. You're hard at it early, as usual. Smile Smile Smile Smile Smile

The Wixxy evidence continues to mount and demonstrates clearly that Ms Jackson has unusual thought processes.

This current evidence is (1) that her FWA squeeze, Lawler, accessed the HSU computer network remotely, (2) that she purchased a car on the HSU Diners Card (the loyalty points were many thousand and obviously help fund her frequent personal Melbourne-Sydney flights) and (3) that she had a HSU laptop "cleaned" and serviced at HSU expense, for personal use.

One must wonder why normal guilt processes would not just encourage her to "walk quietly and carry a big stick" rather than stupidly seek the limelight as a whistle blower.

She has for months been demanding a "full investigation of the corruption at the HSU" through every mike or camera within cooee of her. She seems oblivious to the fact that the enquiry she calls for will identify herself as a chief offender in the HSU corruption stakes.

What an unorthodox way to confess one's own questionable conduct.


August 9. 2012 10:09 AM


DMW - I thought I was your sidekick.  Either way it doesn't matter.

Obviously from recent comments around here - no one can comment unless they support the concept the ALP is completely right and the media (in general) is completely wrong.

Sorry folks there are no absolutes in this world.  The media get fed a consistent message from the LNP in Abbott's regular stunts.  From the ALP they get pyning for the return of Rudd from some "leader", criticism of Gillard from another and little detail on how things work before they are introduced.  The media can criticise the LNP as well - look at the Courier Mail and Brisbane TImes websites for proof.

An example that is relevant here is Qantas.  Early this year, their CEO announced the formation of a "Full Service" airline to be based in South East Asia that amongst other things would offer similar facilities to Qantas' large A380 aircraft.  The problem was that the new airline would use small aircraft such as A320s (think Jetstar domestic and Tiger planes).  The media went wild - the airline industry commentators suggested WTF would have been a better response.  In the subsequent 6 months, it's turned out that there had been no successful negotiations with a South East Asian nation to establish the base for the airline, there had been no planning on how to compensate for the extra weight of the first class cubicles meaning it was doubtful the A320s could lift a commercial payload and the airline is dead in the water.  (For confirmation google "RedQ")

The media - realising that Qantas didn't have consistent and credible plan - have criticised Qantas ever since because they feel they were sold a pup.  (Without getting into the rights and wrongs of the issue, the airline grounding also gave a sense of desperation.) While the ALP Government does exist and is doing good work has the same creditability problem due to a lack of discipline & credibility (there are numerous examples on this thread).  

If those who believe the ALP is always right who regularly comment on this site (and more importantly the ALP Party Machine) don't realise this soon - the LNP will form a federal government in the latter half of 2013 - and based on the recent history of Queensland, that would be a bad thing.

And as a postscript - Kathy Jackson seems to be a master media manipulator.  I reckon the "karma  train" is coming her way soon.


August 9. 2012 10:11 AM



A small correction to the above - RedQ was announced in September 2011.


August 9. 2012 10:49 AM


and it is Good Morning from him,
2353 guess we are both side kicks that leaves a few other things to sort out.

Who is the left one or the right one, the straight guy and the fall guy and possibly, who is the short one or tall one?

Thanks for drawing attention to the similarities with Qantas. It is not something I would have even thought of looking for.


August 9. 2012 11:28 AM

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Talk Turkey
It was good to talk with you this morning and hear of your progress.  We all wish you a comfortable day.

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August 9. 2012 11:29 AM

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Hi Lyn
Your links this morning were an informative collection about the Kathy Jackson saga, comments from sound economists, and NBN information.  The Abbott cartoon in Public Opinion was a classic.

The first item, from [The Blogical Voice[/i], was encouraging for all of us who express our views in the Fifth Estate. theblogicalvoice.com/.../

This afternoon I’ll be posting a new piece The scourge of the rent-seekers.

Ad astra

August 9. 2012 11:40 AM

42 long

I reckon the LNP is more right than ever.
Murdoch has said he wants the ALP out. None of his employees are going to act against that view,( unless they wish to quit journalism).
  Turnbull has been given the job of " demolishing the NBN", by Tony, so any publicly expressed opinions he has will be framed to THAT end.
  Tony Abbott is not famous for long, detailed and factual speeches.
   With Katter, Barnaby, Brough and Angry Andersen out and about the LNP future will be less predictable, as a happy group of little "Vegemiters".
   The LNP future would be less risky with Turnbull running it at election time.
  There we go NO left Bias at all....

42 long

August 9. 2012 12:15 PM


DMW - I don't know which Ronnie I want to be - it's all too hard!

The point of the Qantas example above (for those that don't get it) is that since September 2011, the share price has tanked, Qantas is losing domestic traffic hand over fist (if media reports are correct) to Virgin and there is a new ad campaign that has some good music - but doesn't actually show a plane or tell you why flying Qantas is better than anyone else.  At least people could understand "I Still Call Australia Home" and there was some sense of arriving home at overseas airports when getting on a Qantas plane.  Now most Australians that fly overseas use another carrier due to price, ability to get to where you want to go simply, or a better overall experience - the "experience of arriving home" when boarding a Qantas plane is outweighed by other considerations.  By the way most "Qantas" planes to and from New Zealand are actually operated by a New Zealand registered subsidiary.  

The majority of Qantas planes leave and arrive pretty close to the advertised times so the staff that actually roster, schedule, clean and fly the planes are all competent - but the general sense of incompetence generated by things like "RedQ", a complete shutdown over industrial action is reflected in media reports and shareholder confidence.  Qantas asset value has recently been higher than its market capitalisation - which when you think of it is crazy but is similar to the treatment being metered out to the Government.  Like Qantas, the Government is responsible for at least part of the problem.


August 9. 2012 12:17 PM


Hi Ad and Everybody

Time for Twitterverse for you.  Thankyou Ad for always being so supportive you are a “forever pleasure”

Firstly  I want to tell Psyclaw how much I appreciate  his bright and cheery post  7.46am.   Thankyou Psyclaw,  also for all your posts they are  brilliant reading, reasoned informative  
& I love them.

Thankyou to  Per Ardua for straight down the line common sense @ 11.57pm last night.

Not missing Gravel our little Sweetie, thankyou Gravel.

Super highway just got a whole lot faster
AFTER years of slow and unreliable internet connections, Kevin Bogie and his family were happy to sign-up to the national broadband network's fibre optic service when its trucks and technicians arrived in Kiama Downs last year.

Anthony Frisina‏
Yesterday's abcnews NBN coverage was simplistic and inaccurate. Taxpayers deserve better. @abcmarkscott @ABCMediaWatch @meadea

Janice Gill‏
$3b rise in bill to bring households up to speed http://www.smh.com.au/it-pro/-23ulr.html

becky‏  (AFR Free)
Oakeshott to press NBN for answers afr.com/.../oakeshott_to_press_nbn_co_for_answers_zMe3T32dtBoBMqujgil93I

Mr Denmore‏
Aussie newspaper writedowns send News Corp to $1.55 billion loss http://bloom.bg/OMvoKS via @BloombergNews

Abbott's Freedom Wars risks collateral damage, Jonathan Green
Just the sort of thing, we can only assume that would be given a new lease on life by an Abbott Government's professed intention to repeal that section of the Act following the precedent set in the silencing of Bolt.

Stupidity is on the rise in our age of enlightenment www.theage.com.au/.../...nment-20120808-23uiq.html via @theage #auspol #breakfastnews

Janice Gill‏
States leave consumers clueless on pricing
CONSUMERS in NSW cannot use an independent national website to find the cheapest electricity deals because the state government wanted to force retailers to publish prominent warnings on bills about the costs of the carbon tax.

Matthew Ross ‏
“MikeKellyMP: Demand for power falls http://www.smh.com.au/business/-23uk9.html” #auspol

Baillieu trying to squeeze a little extra out of NDIS trial deal, Feds resist, for now #springst #auspol

Abbott won't commit to power sector reform
But Mr Abbott says the federal regulator is to blame for allowing hefty price rises and the government is making it worse by imposing the carbon tax.

Leroy‏_Lynch by Phillip Coorey
Australian Energy Regulator's Chairman agrees consumers are paying too much for electricity www.smh.com.au/.../...too-high-20120808-23uou.html #

Why I'll be kicking you off this blog
I'm gonna be swinging the mighty Ban Hammer and rejecting a lot more comments for reasons of ill-mannered tone, outright abuse, straying pointlessly from the topic and general lameness. It doesn't mean you can't disagree with people or with me. But you'd better be witty and on topic when you do.

Agnes Mack‏
Today's AM interview not up on @TonyAbbottMHR 's website (http://bit.ly/Mk4zAC) yet . Happy to help, staffers : http://bit.ly/Mk4jl5

totally debunks lies of tonyabbottmhr and his lies that greater prices wont cause demand 2 fall and carbon reduction Demand for power falls

Kidman sells, Turnbulls buy in New York
The latest Australians to buy up in the New York are power couple Lucy and Malcolm Turnbull who have bought a two-bedroom apartment near Central Park for $3.275 million

The services the Turnbulls will have access to in their new home include: a full-time staff of doormen, elevator attendants, a concierge and access to a bike room. Laundry service and in-building storage are also available, according to an advertisement for other Century apartments. There are a number of one- to five-bedroom apartments available and Cityrealty estate agents are quoting prices up to $US9,600,000.

Newman Govt 'hopeful' job losses won't exceed 20,000 Treasurer Tim Nicholls. | The Courier Mail #qldpol #NewmanLied2Qld http://bit.ly/QgsUDI


August 9. 2012 12:25 PM

Tom of Melbourne

Interesting observations from (former Cabinet Minister, former ALP National President)Barry Jones. Though the wishful thinkers will probably figure out how to “blame the media” for this considered article by Jones.
”In the lifetime of this Prime Minister, the ALP as an organisation has become increasingly unrepresentative of the community at large, and even of Labor voters.
The party’s owners, people like Paul Howes, Tony Sheldon and (until recently) Michael Williamson, think that the priority is for them to keep control of their property. They were not unduly worried when the ALP’s primary vote in the New South Wales state election in March 2011 fell to 25.6 per cent. From the Howes-Sheldon perspective, all was well because they were still running the show.

They regard the opinions of voters outside their unions as totally irrelevant; after all, they haven’t met many.

The ALP must turn outward, embrace democracy and reject oligarchy

Read more: www.theage.com.au/.../...nment-20120808-23uiq.html

Tom of Melbourne

August 9. 2012 12:41 PM


   The trouble with the utterances of Barry Jones et al is he was also a "factional player" who now that he has no use for the factional warlords screams reform!
Pity he and the "other" preachers of reform saw no need for it until well after their retirement!


August 9. 2012 12:44 PM

42 long

  Pity the opposition don't have an equivalent of Barry Jones,  currently... He is a rare and honest man.
  Malcom Fraser (the reformed) might be considered an equivalent . He has said a few things about the LNP  but found the Party he lead, so disgusting policy-wise that he had to resign to keep his dignity.
  TfM do you want me to dig up a few of his quotes?

42 long

August 9. 2012 12:56 PM


Greetings Swordsfolks

It's OUT! My catheter that is. About an hour ago. 3 weeks to the day it's been in.

Dear Dog I thank and praise you.

Haven't peeed yet, probably electrified barbed wire I guess for while, but who cares, I'm as tough as Aeroplane Jelly!

Anyway not feeling too creative right now, will hope to go back to sleep soon. I'll just quote the lat verse of the infinite saga of The Ballad of Eskimo Nell, the rootin'-tootinest whore the world has ever known, and the most famous bawdy pome of all, (or maybe equal first with The Good Ship Venus.) There are supposed to be thousands of verses, because people keep adding them, but the last verse is always the same, classic and definitive and eternal. I love it.  

When a man grows old
And his balls grow cold
And the end of his knob turns blue,
And the hole in the middle
Refuses to piddle
I'd say he was #UCKED! - ,
- Wouldn't you?!


Breaking news: I have peeed again at last! Nice and pale pink, not the bloody mess I was anticipating, and it actually works! Smile  HOOOOOO-RAAAAAAAY!


August 9. 2012 01:01 PM


Did anybody hear Tony Abbott this morning on "AM"?  He repeatedly called the NBN the "Nationalised Broadband Network".  More dog whistling?  Needless to say the error wasn't corrected by the interviewer (Sabra Lane).

Additionally, TA said "a cheap smear from a government which specialises in cheap smears."  A wonderful example of projection!


August 9. 2012 01:12 PM



I find it hard to believe that the Liberal Party doesn't have the same issues as the ALP.  In Queensland there is at least the Santoto and Palmer factions.

www.couriermail.com.au/.../story-e6freoof-1226410511325this f


August 9. 2012 01:27 PM


Labor’s next generation
Reports of Labor’s death have been grossly exaggerated, writes Dennis Altman @ Inside Story

In fact, one of the worst aspects of politics at the moment is that the relentless concentration on leaders means that we know remarkably little about backbenchers. A few MPs become recognisable figures, usually for some superficial characteristic – Wyatt Roy for his youth; John Alexander for his tennis career; Craig Thomson because of fraud allegations. But the great bulk of the 150 members of the House of Representatives, along with most of the seventy-six senators, are generally seen as ground troops to be deployed in the battles between their leaders, and when we see them speaking in our occasional glimpses of parliament it’s generally to two or three other members in an otherwise empty chamber.

Taken along with the Barry Jones article some interesting stuff to consider and discuss


August 9. 2012 01:35 PM


ToM @12:25pm

You see all comment here as blaming the media. My beef with the media is that they have to report the truth and stop dumbing down the public with simple 30 second soundbites, and serving up opinion as facts. By all means discuss ogliarchy within Labor - I don't have a problem with that. I don't have a problem with change either, a party that doesn't change is dead. But I note you also left out these bits, no doubt because it didn't fit with your premise, that we at TPS are blind and not willing to embrace debate (not true) :

Media - old and new - is partly to blame.

Politicians share the blame.

For decades, politics has been reported as a subset of the entertainment industry, in which it is assumed that audiences look for instant responses and suffer from short-term memory loss. Politics is treated as a sporting contest, with its violence, personality clashes, tribalism and quick outcomes. The besetting fault of much media reporting is trivialisation, exaggerated stereotyping, playing off personalities, and a general ''dumbing down''. This encourages the view that there is no point in raising serious issues months or years before an election. This has the effect of reinforcing the status quo, irrespective of which party is in power and at whatever level, state or federal.


August 9. 2012 01:37 PM


ooops sorry left off the citation to Barry Jones article:

Read more: www.theage.com.au/.../...nment-20120808-23uiq.html


August 9. 2012 02:06 PM


Hi Jason,
long time no see, welcome back Smile

Mr Jones was factionalised, a celebrity and one of the grumpiest members I ever met. Add his smarts and it made for a very odd kettle of fish.

Do I recall correctly that you (along with others) worked long hard to have a good local person endorsed against the factional hack/s being pushed by the state warlord?

A good local member who works their electorate well will, more often than not, be able to overcome the daily leadershit stuff and other supposed shortcomings of the guvmint.

I suspect one problem that some are having is that they are spending more time wringing their hands and believing the 'Kevin is our only Chance' line rather than actually getting out and about in their electorate talking with the people and 'educating' them.

If more representatives took lessons from some of the greats of 'parish pump' politics such as Lance Barnard, Peter Andren and, dare I mention Barnard's replacement, Kevin Newman the guvmint would have more than a few less problems.


August 9. 2012 02:07 PM

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Hi Lyn
Your Twitterverse is good reading.

I note Agnes Mack has drawn attention to the fact that Tony Abbott’s interviews by Sabra Lane on AM is not up on the Liberal website.  I missed AM because the basketball match against the US pushed it out, but I’ve just read the transcript, and can see why.  She gave him a pretty torrid time, as she can, over electricity prices.  His answers were typical of a man who uses slogans instead of rational argument to make his points, and can’t conjure up a reasoned response when challenged.  She eventually gave up and went onto other subjects, and perhaps feeling that she had given him too hard a time, ended up with a Dorothy Dixer on his proposed visit to Cape York.  It was gratifying to see the acerbic Sabra get stuck into Abbott.  I hope we will see more of that.  Maybe this is another tiny sign that the tide is turning.


I see John Birmingham is fed up with trolls that infect his blog and leave a trail of abuse, which he has to monitor and delete.  He sounded quite disconsolate.  We are fortunate here to have few trolls and generally polite conversation.  The current post has evoked quite a lot of too-ing and fro-ing and a sprinkling of unnecessary barbs, which I have allowed in the hope that the tensions between some bloggers might reach resolution.  Later this afternoon I’ll post another piece, which will give us a chance to turn the page and resume our usual discourse.

BTW, I never knew trolls looked like that!


The NBN news is mostly positive, but of course Abbott is talking ‘over budget’, ‘behind schedule’ and ‘less customers connected’.  By the election I believe there will be so many happy and excited consumers, like Kevin and Leanne Bogie in the SMH that the NBN will be unstoppable.


I hope the Turnbull’s will be comfortable in their newly acquired New York apartment.  The view looks nice, and interior pretty swish!


Ad astra

August 9. 2012 02:12 PM



That was the quote I was about to use when I noticed that ToM had linked to the article already.

Just musing, and there is no right answer, but what difference does it make to people going on to read the article because of the excerpt chosen? And what effect does the person providing the link have?


August 9. 2012 02:30 PM


DMW - in response to your question.

My usual problem with reading links provided by the wonderful Lyn (or others) is time.  Today I had the time to read the link posted by TfM & LiR.  My rationale to read the link was the reference to Barry Jones - an awesome intellect.  I also take Jason's point that he was also a factional hack in his day.

Going further with Jason's point, I wonder if I fronted up at the local ALP or LNP Branch (I assume there is one) and demonstrated that I was capable of being an MP without being a factional player since I was in my 20's (trust me those days have long gone), would I have a chance?  The sad answer is I doubt it - despite any capability I had.  Aside from that, its not worth the inevitable divorce should I attempt to do something that foolish (that's not a reference to politics in general - that's a quote from my wife when someone suggested I'd make a good politician)

There are a lot of good people that enter politics on both sides.  Pity most of them become factional hacks before they see the inside of a Parliamentary Chamber.


August 9. 2012 02:32 PM

Tom of Melbourne

Jason, John Cain, Barry Jones, Gareth Evans and John Button were all part of the Victorian Independents, and were instrumental in reform of the party a few decades ago.

The Independents we’re exactly a faction in the modern vernacular, there was little of the factional disciple we now see.

It is simply incorrect to characterise this loose group in the way you have.

Button was reflected the “it was time for the ALP and unions to have an amicable divorce” between the ALP and unions, Jones is now reflecting on the control the unions exercise.

People should realise that the union affiliation is holding the party back.

Tom of Melbourne

August 9. 2012 02:48 PM


   Yes that's right we did try at the 2004 election to have Tony Zappia made the candidate,as he was a long serving mayor of a council that took up a lot of the electorate and was/is well known and works the electorate very well only to have the Warlords send us someone else.
At the 2007 election party office saw the error of their ways and endorsed Tony as long as he was willing to join the left! he had been for his 30 years as a member unaligned to any faction and voted at state council/convention on the merits of the motions.

    I'd say you're right about the coalition, their "gene pool" would be as shallow as Labor! and here in SA Bernardi and Pyne are the factional warlords who do the same as Labors warlords.


August 9. 2012 03:31 PM

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I have just now posted The scourge of the rent seekers.  Enjoy.


Ad astra

August 9. 2012 03:39 PM


   "It is simply incorrect to characterise this loose group in the way you have."

No it isn't! it's great for Jones to have 20/20 vision now, but Labor's problems didn't start in 2007 when we took office! Jones et al should start by saying sorry for doing nothing, they could see the problems that have now happened but chose to do what?

ToM we don't resonate with "our" old demographic the working class because we don't have any as representatives!

We're not progressive on things like Same sex marriage because the catholic right or the "shoppies union" don't pre select people that would vote yes to such things.

The unions aren't the main problem they are part of it but not the only problem.


August 9. 2012 03:47 PM


cheers Jason,
from the little I have heard Mr Zappia knows the rounds and does work his (your) electorate well.

I know it doesn't apply to all but there are som who don't bother much until near election time and that there are some senators who rely almost totally on being one of the top two on the ballot paper.

it is getting trotted out more and more that Chiffley/Whitlam/Hawke, take your pick of many other Labor luminaries wouldn't stand a snowballs chance in Hades of getting preselected today. Good for the story being told, they may be exceptions that prove the rule, but, both current ACT MHR's bucked that and got up as have around half a dozen others that I can't instantly name cos the brain won't spin to there atm.

Your chance or mine would be pretty slim though.


Comments are closed