loading animation

Mortgaged to the Hilt

loading animation
Friday, 12 October 2012 17:32 by Acerbic Conehead
2GB’s headquarters at Macquarie Square is engulfed, currently, in a fog of despondency.

Business used to be booming, with all the expensive metal advertising billboards that surrounded the square resplendent with copious amounts of posters spruiking the wares of various businesses that were only too happy to jack up their prices and hand over the proceeds to 2GB’s shareholders.

Yes, they were the good old days, when Macquarie Square was known as the OK Corral – where any leftie who was stupid enough to venture thereabouts, ended up with an arse-full of buckshot. Now, however, it’s known as the Not-So-OK Corral, and the now-resident leftie goons, aka the Handbag Hit Squad, rule the roost.

So, in response to this changing of the guard, the advertisers have shot the crow instead and the billboards lay empty. In fact, the very expensive metal advertising hoardings around Macquarie Square have had to be taken down and sold as scrap, to pay for a few outstanding bills. They have been replaced with cheap balsawood panels, but still, they lay bereft of any income-generating ads. The square, really, has gone to the dogs, with tumbleweed blowing everywhere and property prices in the neighbourhood plummeting.

And this is of special interest to Tony Abbott. As everyone knows, Margie, the girls and he live just around the corner from Macquarie Square and their house is now worth only a fraction of what they paid for it when they took out that great big fat mortgage. Tones had hoped to have been installed in The Lodge by now, with his accompanying fat pay rise. So he is now reduced to cooking food in his kitchen and selling it from the rickety table he has placed on the weed-infested pavement outside his front door.

So, on this particular day, whilst Tones is slaving away in the kitchen, he hears the barking orders of Margie bellowing out from the lounge-room where she is watching, with the daughters, the footy on the telly.

Margie: Tony!!! I hope you’re working hard out there in the kitchen!!! There’ll be no re-runs of Downton Abbey for you if you don’t prepare all that food for us to sell!!! And you’ve got a long way to go, y’know, in making a success of that scam you’re trying to pull of pretending you’ve got a feminine side...If you’ve made any headway at all, it’s all down to me, y’know...all those TV and magazine interviews I’ve done, trying to save your sorry ass on Newspoll...

[Tones, dressed in his pink frilly apron and matching budgie smugglers, has had enough of these disrespectful taunts at his masculinity. He so wants to blurt out, “if you don’t shut your fat mouth, woman, I’ll whack you a few times around the chops with this wooden spoon I’m holding...grrrrrr...” Instead, realising he needs Margie’s ongoing cooperation in his cunning plan to manufacture a caring feminine side, he replies meekly through gritted teeth.]

Tones (sarcastically): Yes, dear...I can assure you I’m working extremely hard, dear...in fact, I haven’t worked so hard since that last door-stop interview I gave, when I only gave the reporter the chance to say, “Erm...Mr Abbott...” and I walked off to meet my pedicure appointment...heh...heh...

Margie: Well, if you don’t lift your game in there, mate, I’ll be cutting off more than your toenails...

[Tones has had enough of this girly cooking lark and decides the time is ripe for ending the Handbag Hit Squad’s hegemony in Macquarie Square once and for all. But, he knows this won’t be easy. The Handbag Hit Squad, comprising of Penny Wong, Nicola Roxon, Tanya Plibersek and led by that bloody witch Gillard, have already put paid to his first line of defence, Julie Bishop, Kelly O’Dwyer, Michelle Grattan and that bird Sophie Mirabella. With handbags at two paces, Julie and the other loyal girls didn’t stand a chance.

So, Tones is on to Plan B, and what a plan it is, even if he says so himself. Tones is going to bring in the heavy-hitters, those members of the Coalition who are strong of stature and carrying, literally, a lot of weight in the organisation. “Huh...just watch Gillard and her Handbag Hit Squad get the better of these guys...no way Jose”, Tones confidently says to himself.

However, there is one serious flaw in his latest plan: all the big hitters are blokes, and Tones doesn’t want it to backfire on him when the cyber-bullying lefties in the anti-social media say that all he is good for is organising his over-weight male goon squad to bash up a group of girls. All Margie’s good work in trying to manufacture a feminine image for him would have been to no avail. But, first, Tones has to get Margie’s permission to leave the kitchen.]

Tones: Erm...Margie, darling...I need to go down to the convenience store to get a packet of Johnnies...won’t be long...

Margie: Huh...I don’t think you’re going to need any for a while, mate...I’m going to have to do a lot more interviews on your behalf...and you know how they always give me headaches...

[Tones has to reassure Margie that what she means by a packet of Johnnies, is not what he had in mind. He explains to her that he needs some more desiccated coconut to sprinkle on the cakes he is making.

So, Tones gets his leave-pass and, stuffing four of his hardest rock-cakes in his chaff handbag, sets off for Macquarie Square. Once there, he gets on the mobile to the four heavy-hitters, reminding them not to forget to bring along their chaff handbags (Tonebags) containing the women’s clothing he had procured for them earlier.

Soon, four taxis, the suspensions of which seem to be struggling somewhat, stop at the square. They are so low to the ground, Tones reckons each contains a herd of hippos being transported to the local zoo. Immediately, Joe Hockey, Alan Jones, Ron Boswell and Scott Buchholz are disgorged. However, the health and safety of the taxis’ suspensions are still at risk.]

Tones: About time too!!! And what gives with the overloaded taxis – surely you’ve only got your Tonebag inside with your women’s clothing – they couldn’t weigh that much!!

[It takes all their strength for the four heavyweights to lift their chaff handbags out of the taxis. In disgust, Tones turns on Joe Hockey.]

Tones: How many times have I told you not to carry your budget black holes around in your Tonebag!! No wonder it’s so heavy – it’s sucking in all the matter from miles around, ffs!! Sheesh...just get your high heels, fish nets and push-up bra out, go behind the hoarding and get changed...

[Tones then turns on the hapless Alan Jones.]

Tones: And as for you...it’s all your fault we lost the advertising on the hoardings...So, why’s your Tonebag so heavy then?

[Tones doesn’t even wait for an answer, and immediately opens up Alan’s chaff handbag and spots, as well as his batch of women’s clothing, a whole array of car parts! There are hub-caps, ashtrays, a jack, window wipers and god-knows what else!]

Tones: WTF’s all this? No wonder your friggin’ Tonebag weighs a bloody ton!!

Alan (indignantly): Huh...you didn’t expect me to give my Merc back without a fight, did you? Next week, in place of all the ads that have been pulled from my show, I’m going to be auctioning all these – I reckon I’ll be on a right little earner...heh...heh...

[Tones, in disgust, orders Alan behind the blank hoarding to get changed. Ron Boswell and Scott Buchholz also make their excuses for having extraordinarily heavy Tonebags. Ron’s, for example, is chockers with wheat! He says he is siphoning it off, causing the supply to fall, thereby raising the price, when he will then release it onto the market, making an absolute killing! Tones, being bored by economics, hasn’t got a clue what Ron is on about, so turns to Scott, who maintains his chaff handbag is so heavy because he has imprisoned Campbell Newman inside. Instead of the bollocking the other three get, Scott gets a gold star from Tones.

Shortly afterwards, all of Tones’ heavy hitters are kitted out in their women’s gear, making a group of Poor Clare nuns look like four Kings Cross hookers. However, before Tones can order them to empty their chaff handbags of the burdensome contents within, and arm their Tonebags instead with a workmanlike rock cake, Joe can’t help aiming a few well-directed jibes at Alan.]

Joe: Hey, Alan...why can’t you learn to keep your big mouth shut at those flaky Young Liberal shindigs – if it wasn’t for you, we wouldn’t be in this mess...

Alan (pompously): Don’t pay any attention to these leftie accusations, my boy...they are purely canards...

Joe: Huh...talking of canards, Alan, I hear you next car is going to be a Rolls Canardly...

Alan (excitedly): Wow, Joe...that’s news to me! Is a Rolls Canardly their latest up-market model for celebrities like moi?

Joe: I don’t know about that, Alan...but I hear it’s been designed for you in particular – it rolls down one hill and can hardly get up the next...bwahahahaha...

[The others wet themselves laughing at Alan’s expense.]

Alan (highly indignant): Huh, mate....it’s a good job you haven’t got a mirror handy to see yourself...with those man-boobs and that push-up bra, you’re doing a good impersonation of Silicon Valley...heh...heh...

[Suddenly, from around one of the corners of Macquarie Square, appears the Handbag Hit Squad, wielding their fearsome handbags (except for Julia, who has forgotten hers again!)

Tones’ gang realises they are outflanked and despairingly try to lift their overladen chaff handbags to swing at Gillard’s mob, but to no avail. The Handbag Hit Squad is on top of them, making Tones wish their chaff handbags were full of weightless carbon dioxide instead.]

Julia: Well, well, well, girls...look who it is – the Tonebag Tit Squad...heh...heh...Let’s wreck the joint!!

[Before Nicola, Penny and Tanya have time to raise a handbag in mortal combat, Joe and the others take to their heels, leaving Tones on his own, angrily facing up to a handbag-less Julia who is standing in front of the balsawood advertising hoarding.

Tones swings a punch, which misses Julia, but makes a hole in the hoarding. He swings his other fist, which again doesn’t hit his intended target. Before Tones can extricate his fists, Nicola Roxon, most appropriately as Attorney-General, nips under the hoarding and clamps Tones in handcuffs. Tones is going nowhere.

Hours later, and night has well and truly fallen. Tones’ plaintive cries of, “Margie...help...I’m going to miss Downton Abbey on the telly...” go unheard and unanswered in the Abbott household where Margie and the daughters are busily trying to complete the cake-making task that Tones has ungraciously failed to complete.]

Daughter 1 (anguished): Dearest Mamma...it looks like daddykins will never make it into The Lodge...We’re doomed to having to make and sell lamingtons to pay the mortgage for the rest of our days...boo...hoo...

Margie: I hate to tell you this, dearie, but it’s even worse than that...

Daughter 2 (equally anguished): Oh, how could it be so, Mamma?

Margie: Have you ever tried to get people to buy lamingtons that don’t have any desiccated coconut on them?

Comments (113) -

October 12. 2012 06:16 PM


AC, you have outdone yourself. Hilarious from start to finish. I bow before a master.

More, please.


October 12. 2012 06:36 PM


  Good to get a laugh after the last few weeks, good one AC.


October 12. 2012 07:51 PM


I only got the "Johnnie" connection at the end.  Thanks for the laugh!


October 12. 2012 08:32 PM


Thanks AC for another splendid piece of political satire.

Had more than a few smiles and chuckles.

And thnx to Lyn and others this week for their top links.

Thnx to those who replied to my comments and used the links. Much appreciated. As you all know this gig is exhausting. It's nice to know yer efforts are appreciated...helps to movitate when bone tired.

I myself don't always respond to each commentor...but just know that I read most of yer comments...and learn from each.

Quality product on here.

Ad, I hope the loss of your friend has not sapped your spirits...and you come up with the goods next week. Keep well.

All the best to TPS.



October 12. 2012 09:38 PM

Ad astra reply

Thank you for your considerate words.  I’m fine.  I’ve been quiet on the blog today as it was a shopping morning, and I’ve been preparing the next piece this afternoon.  I’m always like that when I’m writing.  I’ve prepared it a little earlier than necessary because there is a lot of mowing that needs doing, and the weekend promises to be warm and dry - ideal for mowing.

All the best to you and Stacey.

Ad astra reply

October 12. 2012 09:40 PM

Ad astra reply

Thank you for delighting us with yet another enjoyable satirical piece that so cleverly picks up on the characters and events of recent times.  

The lamington baking may soon be a required skill for the LOTO.

Ad astra reply

October 13. 2012 03:14 AM


glad to hear it. Agree re: mowing. Smile

It's great to have Acerbic back...just reread the post. SPOT ON.


More on the American VP debate:

QUICK READ: Robert Reich's Super Clear, Super Helpful Review Of The VP Debate
Posted on October 12, 2012 by Angie


Biden also pointed out that Ryan and his allies had tried to privatize Social Security. Score another one for Joe.

On abortion, Ryan had to admit he and Romney would work to prevent women from having the right to choose an abortion if they needed and wanted one. Biden made it clear his religious beliefs about when life began should not, in his view, force anyone who didn't share them to follow them.

I thought Biden's closing could have been tougher, drawing a sharper contrast between the Romney-Ryan "you're on your own" worldview, and the "we're in it all together" belief that has built America — and which Obama and Biden represent.

But overall it was Biden's night. He not only trounced Ryan, but also, in the process, trounced Romney. Joe Biden is an average Joe solidly grounded in America's working middle class — nothing pretentious or devious about him — in contrast to the plutocrat who heads the Republican ticket, and the billionaires who are backing him.


I really dig Robert Reich.

A wise, experienced fella who speaks from the heart.

He gives a damn.

More links on my site here:




October 13. 2012 09:03 AM


It took me a while to get the Johnnie reference as well.  Well done AC, your posts are up there with Clarks and Dawe's.

Your description of Macquarie Street reminds me of areas I have seen overseas where the conservatives have held power too long (something that hopefully won't be the case in Australia).  Although Newman's Queensland is fast heading there, the trains are less crowded, there are a number of small businesses in Brisbane City that are closed and spaces are taking longer to rent out (if anyone is silly enough to set up a business in the first place.  Employment is up considerably greater than the national number and there is a sense of doom and gloom.

Abbott will bring this magnificent ideology to the rest of Australia.


October 13. 2012 09:33 AM


AC Thanks for all the fun. Tones in pink frilly apron and red BS's, handcuffed to signboard - It's a mental cartoon right there.

[Ancient memory of News Comics Page]:-

Bluey and Curly in a cheap eatery, for dessert they order they order chocolate mousse with coconut topping.

Waiter bawls to the kitchen Hand Wink :
Yarra Mud and Dandruff, twice!

But MWS what is this "Johnnie" connection?
What have I missed?
Re Biden/Ryan face-off Yesty I tweeted


Biden with delightful amused grin annihilating Ryan.

And guess what, I got back:

Current TV‏@current

@TalkyTurkey We loved your tweet, so we put it on TV!
Tune in to @Current http://bit.ly/PLcOUt  #Current2012

View conversation Reply Retweet Favorite



October 13. 2012 10:09 AM


Good one Talk Turkey Smile

Those unfamiliar with Current TV can read about it here:

Current TV




October 13. 2012 10:20 AM


Watch the vid:

VPDebate from mirth to malarkey: Laughin’ Joe Biden and the media spin




October 13. 2012 10:21 AM

Ad astra reply

I missed the ‘Johnnie’ reference too, and didn’t link it to the ‘desiccated coconut’ reference – and I read the piece several times!!!  There is only one ‘desiccated coconut’ and that is ‘Johnnie’!  

BTW, my wife picked it up straight away.  That says something about the superior perspicacity of women.

Ad astra reply

October 13. 2012 10:54 AM


Via Susan @ Facebook...from America...but it does remind me of the Australian Liberal party

Defeat The Right In Three Minutes

Right-Wing Ideology in a Nutshell

When you cut right through it, right-wing ideology is just "dime-store economics" - intended to dress their ideology up and make it look respectable. You don't really need to know much about economics to understand it. They certainly don't. It all gets down to two simple words.

"Cheap labor". That's their whole philosophy in a nutshell - which gives you a short and pithy "catch phrase" that describes them perfectly. You've heard of "big-government liberals". Well they're "cheap-labor conservatives".

"Cheap-labor conservative" is a moniker they will never shake, and never live down. Because it's exactly what they are. You see, cheap-labor conservatives are defenders of corporate America - whose fortunes depend on labor. The larger the labor supply, the cheaper it is. The more desperately you need a job, the cheaper you'll work, and the more power those "corporate lords" have over you. If you are a wealthy elite - or a "wannabe" like most dittoheads - your wealth, power and privilege is enhanced by a labor pool, forced to work cheap.

Don't believe me. Well, let's apply this principle, and see how many right-wing positions become instantly understandable.

Cheap-labor conservatives don't like social spending or our "safety net". Why. Because when you're unemployed and desperate, corporations can pay you whatever they feel like - which is inevitably next to nothing. You see, they want you "over a barrel" and in a position to "work cheap or starve".

Cheap-labor conservatives don't like the minimum wage, or other improvements in wages and working conditions. Why. These reforms undo all of their efforts to keep you "over a barrel".

Cheap-labor conservatives like "free trade", NAFTA, GATT, etc. Why. Because there is a huge supply of desperately poor people in the third world, who are "over a barrel", and will work cheap.

Cheap-labor conservatives oppose a woman's right to choose. Why. Unwanted children are an economic burden that put poor women "over a barrel", forcing them to work cheap.

Cheap-labor conservatives don't like unions. Why. Because when labor "sticks together", wages go up. That's why workers unionize. Seems workers don't like being "over a barrel".

Cheap-labor conservatives constantly bray about "morality", "virtue", "respect for authority", "hard work" and other "values". Why. So they can blame your being "over a barrel" on your own "immorality", lack of "values" and "poor choices".

Cheap-labor conservatives encourage racism, misogyny, homophobia and other forms of bigotry. Why? Bigotry among wage earners distracts them, and keeps them from recognizing their common interests as wage earners.

The Cheap-Labor Conservatives' "Dirty Secret": They Don't Really Like Prosperity

Maybe you don't believe that cheap-labor conservatives like unemployment, poverty and "cheap labor". Consider these facts.

Unemployment was 23 percent when FDR took office in 1933. It dropped to 2.5 percent by time the next Republican was in the White House in 1953. It climbed back to 6.5 percent by the end of the Eisenhower administration. It dropped to 3.5 percent by the time LBJ left office. It climbed over 5 percent shortly after Nixon took office, and stayed there for 27 years, until Clinton brought it down to 4.5 percent early in his second term.

That same period - especially from the late forties into the early seventies - was the "golden age" of the United States. We sent men to the moon. We built our Interstate Highway system. We ended segregation in the South and established Medicare. In those days, a single wage earner could support an entire family on his wages. I grew up then, and I will tell you that life was good - at least for the many Americans insulated from the tragedy in Vietnam, as I was.

These facts provide a nice background to evaluate cheap-labor conservative claims like "liberals are destroying America."

In fact, cheap-labor conservatives have howled with outrage and indignation against New Deal liberalism from its inception in the 1930's all the way to the present. You can go to "Free Republic" or Hannity's forum right now, and find a cheap-labor conservative comparing New Deal Liberalism to "Stalinism".

Cheap-labor conservatives opposed virtually all of the New Deal, including every improvement in wages and working conditions.

Cheap-labor conservatives have a long and sorry history of opposing virtually every advancement in this country's development going right back to the American revolution.

Cheap-labor conservatives have hated Social Security and Medicare since their inception.

Many cheap-labor conservatives are hostile to public education. They think it should be privatized. But why are we surprised. Cheap-labor conservatives opposed universal public education in its early days. School vouchers are just a backdoor method to "resegregate" the public schools.



howled with outrage and indignation against New Deal liberalism

Verrry interesting.




October 13. 2012 11:02 AM


I checked Google for:

Tony Abbott, we're not a Stalinist party


Reminder from comment above:

In fact, cheap-labor conservatives have howled with outrage and indignation against New Deal liberalism from its inception in the 1930's all the way to the present.

You can go to "Free Republic" or Hannity's forum right now, and find a cheap-labor conservative comparing New Deal Liberalism to "Stalinism".

I wonder what Australian and American CHEAP LABOUR CONSERVATIVES have in common?

Or should we say who?

Yep, Rupert Murdoch...of Fox News...News Ltd...The Punch...Sky News...Newspoll...



October 13. 2012 11:07 AM


Good Morning Ad & Everybody

Thankyou very much for your Article Acerbic Conehead. You really are a bonus for TPS, we do appreciate you donating your talent for our enjoyment.  Clappety clap clap  for you.

Ad Astra, trust us girls, your wife is up to the minute pretty and alert.  You know everything is much better when the men in our life are gentlemen who appreciate us.  You are one of those perfect appreciative Gentlemen Ad Astra and it shows.

Here is Twitterverse for you

Bushfire Bill
Posted Saturday, October 13, 2012 at 10:27 am
All that needs to be realised about the OM reaction to the PM’s speech is that they are worried about the speech taking hold in peoples’ imaginations.
Therefore, they criticise it, promote false viewership figures, parse it to within an inch of its life, and misrepresent its contents (particularly about Slipper and why the government did not support the Kangaroo Court approach).

Words that millions of women have rehearsed, yet never spoken,Julie Baird

For the first time in Australian political history, a senior woman from a major party stood in our Federal Parliament and attacked her opponent on the grounds of sexism in a long, blistering speech.

Agree or not, the fact that it was the first female prime minister who took the opportunity to do this made it extraordinary.

It struck a chord because she made a speech millions of women have rehearsed in their heads for years -

This is also why the video of the speech went viral.

Despite this, the press gallery have been a chorus of rolling eyeballs this week, pointing out that Gillard was trying to save her skin, to maintain power in a hung parliament. Peter Slipper has been used as a political football by both sides, repetitively, and shamefully, and still is, given both still welcome his vote.

GMegalogenis Julia Gillard's "I had a scream" speech . Solly George, that says a lot about you

George Megalogenis ‏
Today's column: www.theaustralian.com.au/.../story-e6frg6zo-1226494627472

An enraged sisterhood will protect Julia Gillard, Laurie Oakes

Oh for a glimpse of the mum I knew Mike Carlton
It had nothing to do with Peter Slipper's lewd text messages and everything to do with Abbott's lust for power. This is the man who famously told the independent MP Tony Windsor that he would do anything but "sell my arse" to become prime minister and, ever since, has shown every sign that he meant it.

Abbott was prepared to trash parliamentary convention and the presumption of innocence before the law in his rush to wedge the government if he could. A

Arioch ‏
This article turns from a minute #lnp #poodlism to a pro #lnp rant.. Peddling liberal votes #auspol m.smh.com.au/.../speaker-accused-of-bias-over-gillard

David Kirkpatrick ‏
MSM who are still defending how crap they are. The PM’s #misogyny speech stands alone. ‘Context’ is only needed to defend TA @lenoretaylor

Joe2 ‏
Going by this weeks effort, the only "context", that MSM is interested in, is that which paints Abbott and the Fibs in a favourable light,

Geoff Pearson   BY Phillip Coorey  
Abbott team to build ties with Jakarta www.nationaltimes.com.au/.../...0121012-27i91.html … via @NationalTimesAU

Wilkie plotted against Slipper,  Andrew Probyn

Stan Steam ‏
The Australian re PM's misogyny speech "more than 100,000 internet hits" Actually well over 1 million on utube alone http://tiny.cc/w602lw

Pay rise for disgraced Liberal MP
Senator Bernardi was sacrificed for Opposition Leader Tony Abbott to make a point about party discipline, this week's boost will be some compensation to the disgraced South Australian.

In a little-noticed move, Senator Bernardi was appointed as a temporary Chairman of Committees, a role with a 3 per cent salary loading, worth about $5700 a year

Words that millions of women have rehearsed, yet never spoken
Agree or not, the fact that it was the first female prime minister who took the opportunity to do this made it extraordinary.

This was the real Julia: succinct, cool, visceral, combative and pissed off. Alan Jones said her father died in shame; Tony Abbott had just said her government should have died in shame. She was very angry; and beautifully controlled.

Playing the sexism card:a guide for politicians, Daily Life
Albrechtson and Devine routinely denigrate women. Mitchell works in an industry that prides itself on excluding them almost entirely. Yet their desire to stick the boot into Gillard, detract from what can’t be described as anything other than a passionately stirring speech, sees THEM employ the worst kind of hypocrisy. They’re not making a point about misogyny - they’re exploiting the fight against misogyny to make a point against Gillard.


October 13. 2012 11:45 AM


Acerbic Conehead

Absence makes the heart grow fonder. It's great to see you and to have a chance to enjoy your clever wit.

Of course, if I were an Australian political journalist, I would be at pains to point out that the lamingtons are a metaphor for coalition policies and desiccated coconut is the spin and bluster that is required to disguise how poorly formed they are. Abbott wasn't baking them in order to raise money to pay off his mortgage, it was a clever ploy to get a boost in the polls by promulgating a positive association between Abbott and lamingtons - a treat that most voting-age Australians will have fond memories of from their childhood. Another political masterstroke from the best Opposition Leader ever!

Nothing is ever as it seems, it seems.


October 13. 2012 11:53 AM


Hi Ad

Here is another post be Bushfire Bill, lucky for me both were tweeted  great no trawling through PB maze.

  johnnybridge ‏
That Abbott, a man under attack for his unwholesome attitude towards women in power, had brought up the subject, and made it his main theme (of the day, if not the whole week), was neither here nor there.

blogs.crikey.com.au/.../#comments … via@BushfireBill



October 13. 2012 12:17 PM

Acerbic Conehead 2

jane, Khtagh, nasking, TT and NormanK,
Many thanks for your encouraging messages and best wishes.  I’m glad you had a bit of a chuckle.

MWS, Ad astra and 2353,
At times, I “bury” something in a story and hope someone cottons on to it.  10 out of 10 to you all (especially Ad astra's wife) for your “perspicacity”.  However, sometimes I have buried them so deep, I can’t remember what I was originally on about, lol.

Thanks again for a set of very informative and fascinating links.  They will keep us out of mischief this weekend!

Have a great weekend everyone, I should be back later with a song.  Hopefully, you are fans of Ian Dury and the Blockheads.

Acerbic Conehead 2

October 13. 2012 01:21 PM


Nas' @3.14am, Looks like Obama chose well when he picked Joe Biden. His take on the abortion issue-so sensible. He seems to espouse the ideals that I grew up thinking were what made the US great.

It's a pity that too many have just paid lip service to those ideals and with the rise of the likes of the Tea Party, have been trampled underfoot.

Seems like Obama needs to get a head of steam and remind US voters what they stand to lose if they give the Tea party and their billionaire mates the reins of government.

The same applies here, so the sooner the msm stops acting as the Noalition's PR form and starts reporting truthfully and honestly, the better for this country.

Who knows, it might force the Noalition to concentrate onactual policies, not Liealot's brain farts.

The Cheap-Labor Conservatives' "Dirty Secret": They Don't Really Like Prosperity

Well, they do like prosperity, but only if it's confined to them. The serfs must never get any of it.


October 13. 2012 01:25 PM


Afternoon All,
due to the interference of other lives I have had time to read only one article today - and it was from the hated MSM.

PM's speech did stir hearts, but remember the context Lenore Taylor @SMAge/NatTimes
I'm certainly not about to start defending everything written or said by every member of the press gallery which, contrary to what some seem to believe, is a big group of people with hugely divergent work practices, interests, opinions and views. And I reckon the more perspectives available in the political debate, particularly from outside the gallery, the better.
But I do take issue with the suggestion that the differences in response is because the Canberra press gallery is oblivious to how ''real people'' think. Apparently juggling work and kids and doing the shopping and getting to weekend sport on time - as most members of the press gallery do - all occurs inside a ''bubble'' insulating us from ''real'' folk. Of course if it is ever suggested citizens of other places, such as parts of Sydney, are ''out of touch'', that is immediately decried as ''class warfare''.


I don't agree with everything that Lenore has written in this article and, maybe it was due to space limits, she missed mentioning some of the 'context', but overall, it is a pretty good assessment of things from one human beings point of viewing the events.


October 13. 2012 01:53 PM


Last night I retired for the evening having convinced myself that both sides of the current Slipper/Gillard debate were right and wrong. What is being described as the Old Media are trying to convince us that there is "more to this than meets the eye" and are citing context and their superior inside knowledge as the source for their disquiet. The contrary side of the argument coming from the 'Others' (social media, international news services and dare I say feminists) is that "there is more to this than meets the eye" because it marks the culmination of a long-running battle against women in public life.

It strikes me as a conversation between an art critic and a member of the general public as they stand in front of a painting of a bowl of fruit. The critic insists that it is a masterpiece because of the subtle use of colour; the play of light in the background; the distortion of perspective displayed in the table's legs and the distinctive use of brushstrokes to draw the viewer's eye to a focal point. The critic also insists that the context in which the painting was created is important because it shows the artist's desire to rebel against the conventions of the day and to strike a blow for a fresh way of looking at art and therefore society.

The member of the general public tries to remind the critic that it is a beautiful painting in its own right; that it can be appreciated without having any knowledge of historical context, brushstroke mastery, colour manipulation or perspective distortion. Not that this knowledge is not important but that it is not strictly necessary.

That is the argument that I would have made this morning if I hadn't read today's offerings from our learned press gallery. Now I'm just ropeable.

On and on they go about 'context', about how we the unwashed don't understand the bigger picture. All well and good but I have to ask - "why is it that the context in which Gillard's speech needs to be placed only begins ten seconds before she stood to deliver it?"

Surely the context starts with the Opposition's attacks on Craig Thomson which were an attempt to subvert due process by using the parliament as a court to rule on the veracity of evidence in the public sphere but as yet unproven in a court of law. Having reached a conclusion about this evidence, the parliament was then being asked to deliver a verdict and pass sentence on Thomson. This was a complete trashing of the separation of powers and would have made the parliament a laughing stock if no formal charges were ever brought against Thomson (much less a conviction). The Old Media did not call Abbott & Co on this destructive approach and the dreadful precedent that it would have set.

The context presented to us by the Old Media could have started with pointing out that Abbott chose Question Time as the best moment for this attack because it would be going out live on television with a larger audience than any other time of day. The contextualists could have pointed out that the Opposition could have:
a) moved a Censure Motion which would have forced the Speaker to resign if it had been passed
b) sought to have the Speaker brought before the Privilege's Committee if they thought him guilty of unparliamentary conduct
c) approached the government to have the issue placed on the Notice Paper for formal debate, the tone of that debate would have shown the Speaker whether or not he still enjoyed the support of the government
d) worked behind the scenes to convince the government that it was time to cut Slipper loose to protect the standing and dignity of the House
e) any of the above with the justification that it would afford Slipper a modicum of dignity and spared his family the opprobrium of his having been sacked

The Coalition did none of these things. They went for Slipper's throat. More useful context - Slipper and Abbott are/were friends.
They also saw fit to go for Gillard's throat by attempting to tie her to texts sent by Slipper when he was a Liberal Party member and the recipient was not on his staff. This context is rarely mentioned. Abbott wanted this to be about Gillard's judgement in supporting Slipper into the Speakership despite the timeline of the texts and the number of times the Coalition supported him for preselection.

The context of Abbott's ongoing sexist comments over decades, including recent ones, is passed over. His use of the expression 'died of shame' is glossed over as unfortunate.

Where is the contextualisation of 'pot calling kettle black' when Abbott accuses Gillard of sexism by supporting Slipper staying in the chair.

Not one of the contextualists has pointed out how keeping Slipper in the chair would benefit Labor in the short-term. He hasn't had a vote for the last six months and Labor has been down a vote with the deputy in the chair.

The contextualists could have pointed out that this was trial by media where emotional reactions to a couple of relatively tame private text messages were being used as an excuse to circumvent (see: trash) judicial processes; the separation of power between state and judiciary; and the proper processes of the House to deal with their own miscreants.

The contextualists started the clock ten seconds before Gillard got to her feet because it suits the narrative that they have been running since 2010 and they don't have the capacity to elucidate the bigger picture.

I am completely and utterly disgusted with all of them and their attempts to rally around each other in defence of the indefensible.
Mike Carlton excepted.


October 13. 2012 01:57 PM


Loved the comment by Bushfire Bill that Lyn linked to.  I wonder if he (I'm assuming he's male) would consider putting all his comments in a separate blog online so those of us who enjoy his pearls of wisdom don't have to read more than 100 pages of comments on PB?


October 13. 2012 02:11 PM


Nas' @3.14am, Looks like Obama chose well when he picked Joe Biden. His take on the abortion issue-so sensible. He seems to espouse the ideals that I grew up thinking were what made the US great.

same here...when I lived in Canada in the 70s as a teenager I disliked America in the Vietnam war...so many bodies coming back...so many innocents killed...I blamed the Viet-Cong and Chinese/Russians too...and I couldn't stand Nixon until he went to China...

but, there were so many inspiring speakers, anti-war protestors, writers, thinkers, artists, photographers, magazines, scientists, environmentalists, playwrights, home builders, landscapers, musicians...books, albums. songs, posters, street art, communes, protected national parks, photographs, even some religious folk and politicians I dug.

And so much innovation.

Still heaps. But the Bush Wars and this Tea Party stuff...and dominance of huge pushy corporations has made me more wary of America...

and the guns, guns, guns...and overly violent movie/tv show addiction...and advertising, advertising...and too much relationship between religion and state...cults, kooky hypocritical evangelicals...you name it.

It's a pity that too many have just paid lip service to those ideals and with the rise of the likes of the Tea Party, have been trampled underfoot.

So true jane, so true.

Fox News and Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck a big problem.

Puts me off visiting there.

Seems like Obama needs to get a head of steam and remind US voters what they stand to lose if they give the Tea party and their billionaire mates the reins of government.


The same applies here, so the sooner the msm stops acting as the Noalition's PR form and starts reporting truthfully and honestly, the better for this country.

Couldn't agree more...you'd think the MSM could see what kind of hell they will bring on Australia if they cater to this type of politics.

Who will be responsible for the body count?...for one.

Who knows, it might force the Noalition to concentrate onactual policies, not Liealot's brain farts.

Wouldn't that be nice...enLIGHTening?

The Cheap-Labor Conservatives' "Dirty Secret": They Don't Really Like Prosperity

Well, they do like prosperity, but only if it's confined to them.

The serfs must never get any of it.

Indeed jane...

It's just a FACADE




October 13. 2012 02:21 PM


NormanK - you're right.  There is a distinct and subtle but important difference between what the media in the Press Gallery saw & Heard in comparison to what a lot of others saw.

A lot of others saw Gillard finally take on Abbott's s-xist and humiliting comments over a period of time regarding his "respect" for members of Parliament, as well as its traditions and its operation.  This respect was demonstrated by the way Abbott brought up the Slipper discussion and as you rightly point out - the timing to attract the maximum audience.

The media only saw Gillard defend Slipper (who sent some quite disgusting s-xist text messages while he was an LNP MP by the way) which unfortunately is not a crime - so in the eyes of the law he has committed no offence.  Gillard defending Slipper is a one dimensional argument which the foreign press "got" but the Australian press generally didn't.  Is it a result of sharing the same "rarefied" air for too long or is understanding subtlety in a debate something that is waived when you get your press card?   Do they really need to have the crux of the matter shoved down their throats in Australia?  Sadly it seems so.


October 13. 2012 02:21 PM


SHARED Acerbic Conehead's top post with:


Plenty of links there. Adding Lyn's thru the day.



October 13. 2012 02:29 PM

Ad astra reply

After serving my wife warm avocado soup with crisp pancetta for lunch, she asked for a lamington with plenty of desiccated coconut.  I’m still looking for some Johnnie.

Ad astra reply

October 13. 2012 02:32 PM

Ad astra reply

Hi Lyn
BB’s comment was classic, and the linked messages he got from a ‘senior journalist’ astonishing.  The journalist class is angry.  The people are criticising them, and they don’t like it, still certain that they know best.

Ad astra reply

October 13. 2012 02:39 PM


Julia Gillard was defending the integrity of the Parliament, the Australian Constitution and the Separation of Powers, not Peter Slipper.  Unfortunately most of the media commentators completely missed that.

And why doesn't the media report on the fact that Tony Abbott spoke of sexism and misogyny in his speech directly before the PM's.  That's why she opened with "I will not be lectured about sexism and misogyny by this man.  Not now.  Not ever."

I'll repeat what Terry Sweetman said in the Courier Mail:
"...but if they [the Opposition] don't want Gillard to play the gender card, as Abbott claims, they should stop dealing it to her."
I suppose the answer is, they don't have any other cards - and certainly no trumps.

Abbott raised sexism and misogyny, not the PM - what else was she supposed to talk about?


October 13. 2012 02:41 PM


Suffer little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God




The hypocrisy and inconsistency of an eyes wide shut nation...and too many of its MSM.

Complicit in dog whistling antics...and protecting evil.



October 13. 2012 03:00 PM



I'd even make the argument that what Slipper and Ashby said in a private text exchange were far from reprehensible. Who hasn't heard of turkey's necks and blokes who think with their d*cks? I am not in the least offended by those texts. But if one were to try to defend them there would be cries of sexism and deflection along the lines of "you're only saying that because you're trying to defend Gillard's defence of Slipper" etc etc. I'm happy to go with the community consensus opinion that they were unacceptable but they didn't warrant the Speaker of the House of Representatives being summarily sacked, without being able to speak for himself, in a kangaroo court.

What if the texts were subsequently proven to be fraudulent? We have courts for a reason and they must be allowed to perform their function.

I can't begin to describe how angry I am today. Especially with the likes of Lenore Taylor who has been a sensible commentator to date, even if I don't always agree with her. Her attempts to defend the gallery today were pathetic and self-serving.


October 13. 2012 03:00 PM


NormanK, 2353
to add some more 'context' to the aftermath I point you to the last pars in Lenore Taylor's article linked to above.

Assessing the actual political impact of this out-in-the-open gender debate, rather than simply how it made some people feel as Julia Gillard spoke, is something that will only be possible over time.
And it could also be that one reason the feeling, the silent cheer, the thank-god-someone is-saying-it response was almost entirely missing on the day after the Prime Minister's speech was not because the writers lived in Canberra, but because on that particular day a lot of the most prominent commentary was written by men.


My emphasis added.

There is no one correct assessment of how it came about or the aftermath. The sense of outrage that the Old Media and it's practioners 'Don't get it' is misplaced largely because 'it' , whatever 'it' is, is ill defined.

'It' may have some consensus depending on which cocoon we have chosen to reside within. There is some consensus here at this fine place, not because we are correct, but because we have chosen to gather together to re-inforce our own view of the world conversing with others of a similar bent.

No good getting angry, no good 'telling' them they are 'wrong' because they aren't wrong anymore than we are 'right'.

Not only that the more we 'attack' the more they will feel the need to 'defend'. It all becomes pretty pointless really.

Read 'em and weep if you will, but just as you are not convinced by their arguments and 'contexts' it is highly likely they will remain unconvinced by your arguments and 'contexts' as many have chosen to make this an us versus them war rather than a we are all in this together debate.


October 13. 2012 03:17 PM


Related to global warming argument...THE SECOND HALF IS A MUST WATCH

If You've Ever Wanted To Watch An Environmentalist Smack Down A Republican, This Clip Is For You

From Real Time With Bill Maher. 350.org founder Bill McKibben shows just how it’s done in this priceless clip. Watch:


Why aren't Bill McKibben and Bill Maher invited onto Q&A with a female host?

Murdoch people always seem to get an invitation.

And the IPA:

Position on climate change and environmental issues

The IPA adopts a position of climate change scepticism and supports most Australian climate sceptics.

The IPA supports elements of climate change science, including some link between the use of fossil fuels and rising carbon dioxide levels, however it also disagrees with certain aspects of climate theories[citation needed]. Former staff member Jennifer Marohasy supports the view that many environmental issues, including climate change, are exaggerated, and that green groups promote solutions that ultimately do not benefit society.

In 2008, the institute facilitated a donation of $350,000 by Dr G. Bryant Macfie, a climate change sceptic, to the University of Queensland for environmental research. The money is to fund three environmental doctoral projects, with the IPA suggesting two of the three agreed topics.





October 13. 2012 03:30 PM


interesting isn't it, that you took Lenore's defence of the gallery today as pathetic and self-serving where I didn't read it that way.

Quite possibly it is because I live in Canberra (and for many reasons fell in love with the place) and because I have worked alongside and with former members of 'the gallery' I can cut 'em a bit more slack.

I took Lenore's 'defence' as a defence of gallery members who do have 'ordinary lives' and just like you and me are human beans. They live next door to 'ordinary' people who have been known to give them a hectoring from the point of view of 'the unwashed masses'. I have known of gallery members who have attended the local school P&C meetings as ordinary parents.

I have seen members of the gallery in supermarkets doing (presumably) their own shopping; I even saw one of them mowing their own lawn the other day.

The common mythconception of many in the 'new media' of a gallery groupthink and stories being manufactured around the water cooler or more appropriately over morning tea at Aussie's Cafe in the house on the hill, is a Myth. I doubt it has changed that much since the long ago that I inhabited the house and then it was a dog eat dog world, even within bureaux, to be the first to get the story and to be the one that got the exclusive.

Time for 'us' in the 'newmedia' to recognise that the galleri inhabitants are real 'ordinary' human beans and vicky verka.  


October 13. 2012 03:30 PM


I can't begin to describe how angry I am today. Especially with the likes of Lenore Taylor who has been a sensible commentator to date, even if I don't always agree with her. Her attempts to defend the gallery today were pathetic and self-serving.

I agree.

Well said.

And if us exposing misogynistic attitudes of parliamentarians & profiteering media types...and abuse of children practices by individuals in the church protected by the media & politicians & others in authority...

creates an US and THEM situation with a too oft complicit MSM...then so be it.


BTW, there are some in the MSM I respect. Truth-tellers with guts. Getting priorities right...rather than just right-wing corporate.



October 13. 2012 03:33 PM


you are an apologist.



October 13. 2012 03:49 PM

Ad astra reply

Thank you for yet another thoughtful analysis of the contemporary discourse between the journalists and the people.  You really ought to be writing original pieces for TPS.

I read Lenore Taylor’s piece for which DMW provided a link, and then your appraisal.  Your analogy of the art critic and a member of the public was apt.

I could not always follow her logic, although some of the points she makes are germane.  

First, the cartoon was curious.  One approving look surrounded by un-approving looks seemed to capture what we are talking about, that is if the one approving represented the public’s view, the other ten the journalists’.  Was that the message she was sending?  I would have thought the proportion would have been well and truly the other way round.  Perhaps they were all journalists and the ten were ‘giving the eye’ to the one out of line.  That matches my perception of the Canberra Press Gallery where I believe groupthink abounds.  Stepping out of line is hazardous.

Coming to her talk about ‘context’, as BB says in his PB comment, ‘context’ is the name of the Press Gallery game, and we simple plebs, excited by an address that we found exhilarating and inspiring, are so far on the outside that because we don’t understand the ‘context’, we don’t understand that this was just another planned, cynical, tactical move in pursuit of the ‘Abbott is a sexist misogynist’ meme.  

My impression was that this debate was sprung on the Government, with the Opposition using an inappropriate procedure and timing for removing the Speaker.  Maybe Julia Gillard had some wind of it, but if the notice was as short as it seemed to be, she certainly made the most of it, having at her fingertips details of Abbott’s past behaviour that she could quote.  I imagine though that all those examples were burned into her memory.  Her address did not seem rehearsed, but rather coming from the heart.

Yet Lenore is sure of herself: “The further away from the context people were, the more transfixed by the speech they seemed to be.”  Clearly she believes that we, out there, simply do not understand.

She continues: ”… the take-out from Canberra was also because our job is to look closely at the context.  Like the context that the speech was part of a deliberate, tested strategy of capitalising on the Coalition's relative unpopularity with women due to Tony Abbott's political aggression by conflating it with the unsupportable allegation that he actually hates females.

So Lenore thinks that, dazzled by the Gillard rhetoric, we have got it all wrong.  And like Tony Jones and others, she homes in on the formal meaning of misogynist, literally a hatred of women and girls, to argue that Abbott does not fit that definition.  Well he certainly fits the looser definition in feminist theory, namely that misogyny can be manifested in numerous ways, including sexual discrimination, denigration of women, violence against women, and sexual objectification of women.  Abbott fits all of those.  Lenore ought to know that, so playing the ‘Abbott is not a misogynist’ card while using only the strict definition of misogyny, is disingenuous.  I wonder how Lenore would feel about me calling her disingenuous in the same way that she accuses Julia Gillard of cynical political tactics?

She goes on to say that journalists live in the real world and have homes and family and obligations outside of their work, which she seems to be arguing makes them just like the rest of us, ordinary folk.  That avoids the reality that most people live in two worlds, at least two: home and family, and work.  What I maintain is that no matter how ‘normal’ a life Canberra’s political journalists have outside of work, at work they live in a rarified bubble with its own set of beliefs, information flow, prejudices and targets.  Once in the bubble, in their exclusive echo chamber, they are subject to groupthink, the pressure to conform, and the pressure to perform, for some to their master’s requirements.  The cartoon suggests that the non-conformist will soon be on the outer.

My conclusion is that the Canberra Press Gallery, so boxed in as they are in ‘context’, cannot think outside the box, cannot see political events as we do, free from the constraints they experience.  Of course that leads them to believe they are right, and that we are ignorant and wrong.  It may be pointless trying to persuade them to another view; only time will tell who has read the recent events most accurately – they or the vast number of the public who saw them differently.

At the end Lenore seems to hold a similar view: “ Assessing the actual political impact of this out-in-the-open gender debate, rather than simply how it made some people feel as Julia Gillard spoke, is something that will only be possible over time.

Her last paragraph may contain an important message: “And it could also be that one reason the feeling, the silent cheer, the thank-god-someone is-saying-it response was almost entirely missing on the day after the Prime Minister's speech was not because the writers lived in Canberra, but because on that particular day a lot of the most prominent commentary was written by men.


Read more: www.theage.com.au/.../...ntext-20121012-27i1h.html

Ad astra reply

October 13. 2012 03:49 PM

Acerbic Conehead 2

If you haven’t seen Julia Gillard’s demolition of Tony Abbott in Parliament the other day, here’s your chance.


Jooles has followed it up with her version of the Ian Dury and the Blockheads classic, “Hit me with your Rhythm Stick”.  Sing along, as the excoriation becomes a world-wide hit, and Jooles wants to increase its circulation to two million and climbing.

:- )
In the deserts of Sudan
And the gardens of Japan
From Milan to Yucatan
Every woman, every man
:- )
Hit ‘im with your YouTube click
Hit ‘im! Hit ‘im!
Nothin’ but a sexist hick
Hit ‘im! hit ‘im! hit ‘im!
Hit ‘im with my handbag flick
Hit ‘im slowly, hit ‘im quick.
Hit ‘im! Hit ‘im! Hit ‘im!
:- )
In the wilds of Borneo
And the vineyards of Bordeaux
Eskimo, Arapaho
Move your finger to and fro
:- )
Hit ‘im with your YouTube click
Hit ‘im! Hit ‘im!
Serve ‘im right, misogynist
Hit ‘im! Hit ‘im! Hit ‘im!
Hit ‘im with my handbag flick
It’s nice to make him shit a brick
Hit ‘im! Hit ‘im! Hit ‘im!
:- )
In the dock of Tiger Bay
On the road to Mandalay
From Bombay to Santa Fe
Over hills and far away
:- )
Hit ‘im with your YouTube click
Hit ‘im! Hit ‘im!
Dick or prick, mm?  Take your pick
Hit ‘im! hit ‘im! hit ‘im!
Hit ‘im with my handbag flick
Press that mousie, click, click, click
Hit ‘im! Hit ‘im! Hit ‘im!
:- )

Acerbic Conehead 2

October 13. 2012 04:01 PM

Ad astra reply

You quote the same part of Lenore’s text as I: ”And it could also be that one reason the feeling, the silent cheer, the thank-god-someone is-saying-it response was almost entirely missing on the day after the Prime Minister's speech was not because the writers lived in Canberra, but because on that particular day a lot of the most prominent commentary was written by men.

Given that is her view, why did she not try to present a view different from the men, instead of going along with them?  Maybe she agreed with them, but if so, why draw attention to the predominant number of male commentators?

Ad astra reply

October 13. 2012 04:02 PM


       I'm with you on this! I didn't find the "texts" offensive, and if anyone saw some of the rubbish that is sent to my mobile on a daily basis even Slipper would blush.

DMW is right that the gallery probably wont change it's stance but at the end of the day who cares what they think? Fairfax share price hit a record low of 39 cents.
So while they keep writing rubbish readers and advertisers will continue to desert them and rightly so we don't need the likes of Fairfax or News Ltd as we can now gather news elsewhere.


October 13. 2012 04:14 PM

Ad astra reply

Thank you for the light relief in the midst of our intense debate.  Great music, great words!  I’ve never seen anyone playing two saxophones simultaneously!

Ad astra reply

October 13. 2012 04:14 PM

Ad astra reply

You are right: ”So while they keep writing rubbish, readers and advertisers will continue to desert them and rightly so; we don't need the likes of Fairfax or News Ltd as we can now gather news elsewhere.”

That is why they are scared.

Ad astra reply

October 13. 2012 04:15 PM



Don't lump me in with the 'they just don't get it' crowd or the 'real world' advocates. Be very careful to read only what I write and not what you choose to read into it.

I know Taylor is mostly responding to 'just don't get it' criticisms but she does not take the opportunity to clarify the many and varied contexts in play here.

Like the context that the speech was part of a deliberate, tested strategy of capitalising on the Coalition's relative unpopularity with women due to Tony Abbott's political aggression by conflating it with the unsupportable allegation that he actually hates females.

Sure, it might be part of a strategy but who brought the subject up during Question Time? The government tried to steer clear of this subject by pointing out that the evidence on which the Coaltion were relying was still part of a court case. Abbott pressed on regardless, accusing Gillard of sexism, misogyny and poor judgement. How else was she meant to respond?

Yes, Australia's first female prime minister has been subject to gender-based vilification and yes, she was unbottling genuine anger in a genuinely powerful speech, but she was doing it as part of a plan.

Right, so the only context that is applicable here is Labor's plan to attack Abbott over his attitudes to women? What clever strategists Labor are to trick Abbott into trashing the concept of separation of powers and parliamentary process by pressing Slipper during Question Time. Here's where my anger stems from - where is there any reference to Abbott's strategy and the harm it could do to the court case, the House and Peter Slipper personally? Crickets.

Or like the context that the speech was given to defend the indefensible, namely the continuation of Peter Slipper in the role of speaker after the latest ream of offensive and explicit text messages were revealed.

Defending the indefensible - that's the phrase that contextualists would have us believe defines this matter. What about defending due process? And for God's sake - "ream of offensive and explicit text messages"? A ream is 500 sheets or colloquially a large quantity of something. Two texts to the best of my knowledge. Hyperbole much?

I'm certainly not about to start defending everything written or said by every member of the press gallery which, contrary to what some seem to believe, is a big group of people with hugely divergent work practices, interests, opinions and views.

And yet how is it that not one of them mentioned the separation of powers and the need for due process within the House? How is it that they all took exactly the same line when writing their reactions to those events? This is why I'm gobsmacked. Mike Carlton summed it up in a couple of paragraphs and yet these fools have devoted thousands of words to the subject and not mentioned it once.


His motion to dismiss the Speaker on Tuesday was mired in cant. It had nothing to do with Peter Slipper's lewd text messages and everything to do with Abbott's lust for power. This is the man who famously told the independent MP Tony Windsor that he would do anything but "sell my arse" to become prime minister and, ever since, has shown every sign that he meant it.
Abbott was prepared to trash parliamentary convention and the presumption of innocence before the law in his rush to wedge the government if he could. A vote to overthrow a speaker has never happened before. (Jim Cope, Gough Whitlam's first speaker, resigned in 1975 when he knew he had lost the confidence of the government.) But to hell with principle. So ambitious was Abbott, so ruthless, that the friend whose wedding he'd attended, whose counsel he had sought, a man chosen nine times as a Liberal candidate - was now to be collateral damage, so much cat's meat.
The Tories and their media claque howled blue murder when the government backed the Speaker in the vote but, repugnant though it was, it was the proper thing to do. Julia Gillard and her women ministers, especially, were clearly offended by Slipper's adolescent grot. But their support on the floor of the house recognised that the allegations against him remain untested while allowing space for him and his family to cling to some shred of dignity in his resignation.


There it is. Carlton cuts straight to the heart of the hypocrisy while at the same time expressing his displeasure with Labor.

The point is that understanding and calculating the political context, the strategies, the deal-making, the sequences of events, is a critical part of our job. Politics is about presenting a message-as-product, which is what most observers see. We are supposed to gather information and make assessments about how and why the product is made.

Go back to my earlier comment and explain to me why it is okay to start this contextualisation after Abbott moves his motion. Why not go all the way back to Thomson? Or at the very least, start with questioning why Abbott chose QT for his stunt.

It also annoys me no end to hear people saying that it is women (for the most part) who cheered Gillard on which is what Taylor is saying when she contends that it could also be that one reason the feeling, the silent cheer, the thank-god-someone is-saying-it response was almost entirely missing on the day after the Prime Minister's speech was not because the writers lived in Canberra, but because on that particular day a lot of the most prominent commentary was written by men.

Expletive! Expletive! Expletive! (Think bovine waste)

There are plenty of men cheering her for that long-overdue smack-down.

With regard to the 'you're wrong, I'm right' argument, I'm not saying they've got it all wrong. I am saying that they have been conspicuously selective in the contexts that they have decided to provide. What they are providing is not 'the big picture', it is just slightly larger than Gillard's speech. They've zoomed out a little bit to give the speech a bit of context but not far enough to catch Abbott and the Coalition in the frame. Convenient, eh?


October 13. 2012 04:38 PM



We need the press gallery and reporters more generally because they have access to people and information they we can't get our hands on. We even need them to give us their opinions and provide context for events that occur but they haven't yet woken up to the fact that many of us watch the press conferences, speeches and parliament and know exactly what was said. When they provide heavily edited versions of these events in order to make them conform to a narrative or spin comments with selective contextualisation they are doing us and themselves no favours.

I'm cranky because this is a big deal. If the parliament sets the precedent of judging media-presented evidence as being valid and then act on that evidence to chastise an MP we are headed for certain disaster. Imagine a situation where one side of politics has control of both houses and can hand down summary justice on anyone they don't like. Anyone with any talent sitting on the opposition benches will be fair game for a bit of kangaroo courting based on dubious evidence uncovered or leaked to the media.

This is really really important and the fools in the gallery want to move pieces around a chess board as though this is a game. Sure, describe the tactics and manoeuvrings but don't take your eye off the conventions and rules that a civilised polity is meant to live by.

As for in-depth policy discussion - what's that? Unless you want to know how it might affect the polls, forget it.


October 13. 2012 04:47 PM



Thanks for the song.
Hit 'em's what I'd like to do today.
(Metaphorically speaking, of course)


October 13. 2012 05:44 PM


       I've lost faith in the "gallery" and senior journo's on TV such as the cast at the ABC who seem more interested in gotchas than anything else!
Take lateline on Thursday night where Jones spent half of his interview time with Wayne Swan trying to get him to reveal what Nicola Roxon wouldn't in regards to the "text messages" because of the court case.
Now Jones not satisfied with a "no" pushed on with an exercise of how many different ways can I ask the same question, by which time I'm yelling at the TV saying Wayne take your mic off and tell Jones I have better things to do other than sit here and put up with your poor interviewing style and walked off.
Jones and his comrades in the media sit there and say in grave tones If only Labor could get its message out perhaps they wouldn't be in the trouble they are!Well if we had a half decent media not only would they go after Labor when they need to they would also put pressure on Abbott on half the lies he tells on a daily basis as well!
To coin a well known phrase put em in a chaff bag!

On another subject similar to "Slippers Texts" Cory Bernardi who was forced to resign because of his comments on "gay marriage" and Tony Abbott finding such comment offensive was  appointed as a temporary Chairman of Committees, a role with a 3 per cent salary loading, worth about $5700 a year.

Read more: www.smh.com.au/.../...beral-mp-20121012-27ig3.html


October 13. 2012 05:59 PM


NormanK @1.53pm, a masterly assessment of the hypocrisy and corruption of both the Liars Party and their facilitators, the msm.

Nas' @2.11pm, you're absolutely right. The facade needs to be torn down and the rotten fakes crouching behind it exposed.

NormanK - you're right.  There is a distinct and subtle but important difference between what the media in the Press Gallery saw & Heard in comparison to what a lot of others saw.

I disagree, 2353. The press gallery of all people observing and reporting Parliament, would have been acutely aware of what the PM was defending-it's their job, after all.

So for them to say that the PM was defending Peter Slipper is a bit rich.

If ordinary people, without the benefit of years of experience wrt the integrity of the Parliament, the separation of powers and the Constitution, are able to discern what the PM was on about, it bespeaks a poverty of knowledge and terminal incompetence among the so-called pundits.

If we, the public, have to tell them how to do their job, it's time they resigned and started stacking shelves at Coles. We would be no less knowledgeable than we already are.

DMW, I'm afraid I have to disagree with you wrt Lenore Taylor's "defence" of the press gallery.

Everybody has to do everyday tasks like mowing the lawn. And everybody has to do their job competently, or get the sack.

The press gallery fails abysmally on every level of competence, integrity, honesty and accountability. As does the Noalition.

As I said above, if Joe and Josephine Public could see plainly what the PM was defending and the press gallery was completely unable to do so, it's well past time they handed in their passes and started working at Coles.

However, I am certain they knew exactly what the PM was defending, but made a conscious choice to misreport her actions.

If male reporters were more responsible, it may be that not only are they corrupt and incompetent, they're bloody chauvinists as well!

Whichever way you look at it, incompetence, corruption or our old friend chauvinism, they deserve to be slung out on their collective ears.

Except Mike Carlton.

NormanK @4.15pm, hear! hear! All the talk by the pundits about "context" is just so much bovine waste. Because if they were reporting the PM's spirited speech in context, we would be reading about the background.

The speech was, in some ways, the least important thing. The background comprised of the determined efforts of this opposition to trash the integrity of the Parliament, the determination to trash the separation of powers, the determination to trash the Constitution of this country is the "context", culminating in the speech.

And why are this childish opposition leader and his apologists so intent on the destruction of our Parliament and our democracy-it's because Liealot wants the PM's toy and she won't hand it over.

Pathetic, unprincipled, incompetent and childish. He isn't fit to be a spruiker at a travelling boxing show.


October 13. 2012 06:01 PM


Probably Tony Abbott's greatest error over the past week was to move the motion during QT - ie when the ABC was broadcasting live. Of course, he thought that his speech would get the greatest publicity, but unfortunately so did the PM's speech! If he was really clever he would have organised the SSO later in QT so that only his speech went out live - but obviously the Coalition hadn't prepared any questions for the remainder of the time!  It's time the MSM called Tony Abbott out over his tactic of SSO - it is designed solely to provide him with a free party-political broadcast and is unfair to the other parties who don't get the same opportunity.  I'm surprised the ABC haven't worked that out yet - perhaps somebody should point out the bias?
If it wasn't for those who saw QT, and those who put the PM's speech on youtube, how many other people would have only got the "message" that the majority of the press gallery put out?  As far as I can tell, the MSM message is the PM complaining groundlessly about Tony Abbott (wonderful man!)'s sexism and defending (shrillingly) that horrible man, Peter Slipper.  It  has definitely made me question what I read (although I'm cynical enough already).


October 13. 2012 06:02 PM


This makes me angry:

Pakistan clears stranded sheep of health problems

Karachi livestock bosses culled between 7,000 and 10,000 sheep because they thought the sheep had viruses like salmonella and anthrax.

Some were buried alive or clubbed to death before a court order halted the cull.

For the past few weeks, the remaining sheep have been in holding pens in Pakistan and their fate has been unclear.

British tests now show that the sheep are free of infectious diseases.


Tortured, destroyed...put thru hell...for what?

Some sick, greedy people on this planet.

At least some are SAVED...hopefully.

Tho, their future is still grim...doomed.

Poor sheep.




October 13. 2012 06:07 PM


Pakistan is a mess:

Four arrested as Pakistan prays for shot schoolgirl

Pakistani officials say they have arrested another four people in connection with the Taliban shooting of 14-year-old Malala Yousafzai.

Malala was shot in the head in an attack that has been denounced worldwide and by Pakistani authorities, who have offered a reward of more than $100,000 for the capture of her attackers.


See what happens when authorities and govts permit extremist religious views, behaviour and people to infiltrate at all levels...and get out of control.

Separation between church and state. Now.



October 13. 2012 06:07 PM

Ad astra reply

You are on fire today.  I must say I agree with what you write.  And I agree too with jane.

The separation of powers argument, and the need for our Federal parliament to adhere to proper and respectful process, is crucial in this whole episode, but as you say NormanK: “And yet how is it that not one of them mentioned the separation of powers and the need for due process within the House? How is it that they all took exactly the same line when writing their reactions to those events? This is why I'm gobsmacked. Mike Carlton summed it up in a couple of paragraphs and yet these fools have devoted thousands of words to the subject and not mentioned it once.

That is not just appalling, but I suggest also diagnostic of the agenda they are playing out.  Surely they could not be so collectively ignorant and stupid as to not know about, and see the need for proper process?  Given that they do see the need, one can only conclude that the fact that they did not mention it is because they are pursuing an agenda to minimize the opprobrium that Abbott deserves for his conduct, lest that diminish his standing with the electorate.  

In my view, the majority of the Canberra Press Gallery has invested so much of their egos in predicting an Abbott landslide that they cannot retreat from this, and are directing their energies to making their predictions a reality, no matter what it takes, no matter how disingenuous their offerings.  They are desperate to be shown to be right, especially after failing to predict the Rudd removal and the appointment of Carr, and will wave the Abbott and Coalition flags whenever they can, whatever the evidence says.  This is serious and needs to be called for what it is – gross partisan support for their man, Abbott man, but dressed up in spurious, albeit plausible arguments in the eyes of unthinking voters.  What makes them so angry with the Fifth Estate is that they know we are on to them.

Ad astra reply

October 13. 2012 06:09 PM


Nas' @2.11pm, you're absolutely right. The facade needs to be torn down and the rotten fakes crouching behind it exposed.




October 13. 2012 06:14 PM


Botswana court allows women to inherit
Posted 10 hours 47 minutes ago

MAP: Botswana
In a landmark ruling Botswana's High Court has overturned a customary law which prevents women from inheriting the family home.

Local customary laws allowed only men to inherit, meaning women could be left homeless when their husbands or other male relatives died.

On Friday judge Key Dingake ruled that the law contravenes the constitution, which guarantees equality for men and women.

"It seems to me that the time has now arisen for the justices of this court to assume the role of the judicial midwife and assist in the birth of a new world struggling to be born," he said.

"Discrimination against gender has no place in our modern day society."


Two thumbs up



October 13. 2012 06:15 PM

Ad astra reply

That was a great You Tube clip with Bill McKibben and Bill Maher, showing as it does the intransigence of extreme right wing politicians in accepting the reality of climate change, even in the face of indisputable evidence.

I too am incensed by the actions take by some in Pakistan against the sheep shipment, now shown to not carrying disease that would render them unfit for human consumption.

Ad astra reply

October 13. 2012 06:18 PM

Ad astra reply

As for the shooting of the 14 year old girl, that grotesquely illustrates the tragic danger of extreme political or religious views.  It's horrible.

Ad astra reply

October 13. 2012 06:18 PM


You are on fire today.  I must say I agree with what you write.  And I agree too with jane.

Agree. Yer on fire too Ad.

I'm off. Loving reading the comments. Great job TPS as usual.

Acerbic, enjoyed the lyrics. Smile



October 13. 2012 06:37 PM


       Bushfire Bill this afternoon!

Bushfire Bill
Posted Saturday, October 13, 2012 at 3:21 pm | Permalink
A truly egregious editorial in The Australian, written (I suspect) by Greg Sheridan. I mean, who else would use the word “jejeune” in a Saturday morning rant?

I won’t go into it all but this is the concluding paragraph. It’s bad enough:

While the young activists who advise Labor -- and whose politics is more akin to the Greens than mainstream Labor -- encourage the government to play to a feminist, animal rights, gay marriage or Abbott-bashing cheer squad on social media, the mainstream is still yearning for competent and trustworthy government. Instead of seeing Ms Gillard feted by an ill-informed editorial in The Guardian over her "splendid diatribe" directed at the "Mad Monk", voters might prefer to hear her explain how she will pay for her education plans, fund her disability scheme, secure our borders and return the budget to surplus. Confronted with that task, we fear her advisers might ask: "Is there an app for that?"

Where do you start with all this?

"Is there an app for that?"

Is there an app for the News Ltd web site?

Why, yes there is! Perhaps they also don’t get this new social media thingmy-jigger, this passing fad, this vacuous, chattering, internet thingy, along with the rest of the latte-sippers and inner-city elites they so regularly lambast?

Has Rupert Murdoch stated many times that the future is digital?

Ooops… yep, again (one suspects only as long as he continues to believe he can control it, though).

Do they think they can make money out of crudely charging basically for “pat per view” of their poxy columns?

Three strikes… yes again. That worked well, didn’t it? As the Mythbusters would say, “Now there’s yer problem, Rupert.”

Rupert’s just pissed off. He took a bath on MySpace and resents bleeding readers over to Twitter and Facebook and the blogs…successful in their own right, and becoming more and more financially successful by the week, as users – young and old – twig that reading what a bunch of has-been,mostly male group-thinks write from their Canberra bunkers bears any more than a passing resemblance to balance or “the truth”.

Consider this: if Murdoch’s MySpace venture had succeeded (problematic, because Murdoch was trying to run it like a dating agency) and Facebook had not, MySpace would be worth more than all his newspapers, all his publishing companies, all his pay TV operations and all his film studios combined.

Rupert’s just jealous because he didn’t “get” the internet. Someone else younger and smarter did, and still does.

One thing I can confidently predict: if Rupert Murdoch had won against Facebook, we wouldn’t be hearing all this plonking dismissal by his editorial writers of the uselessness of social media.

But he did blow MySpace. Killed the goose that may have laid the golden egg, because he doesn’t understand social media. A sub-30 something kid called Mark Zuckerberg is worth more than ten Rupert Murdochs put together, IPO hiccups and all. Zuckerberg lost more in a week of post-float share price slides than Murdoch is, or has ever been worth in total.

Apple Computer, which provides platforms for social media web sites and makes them portable, is the wealthiest company in the history of modern commerce. Bigger than US Steel, bigger than Ford or General Motors, bigger even than Microsoft and certainly bigger than the dynastic and dysfunctional News Ltd.

A single 15 minute speech delivered in an antipodean parliament has had more viewers, sharers and lookers-on around the world than Paul Kelly’s, Dennis Shanahan’s and Greg Sheridans combined articles have had readers in (it must be) years and years.

And yet the condescending editorial (presumably seriously) says that social media – burgeoning, prospering, growing exponentially and full of the immediacy of lively debate and discussion, backed by the huge resources and talents of millions of writers and the worlds largest and most successful manufacturing companies – compared to the droning, grey-haired, utterly partisan, financially failing, vested interest of The Australian and its ilk, is the irrelevant one?

"Young activists"?


Whoever wrote this rubbish been watching too many Apple and Samsung ads, full of young trend setters, queueing up to buy the latest iPod.

Apart from the fact that many of the “activists” here on this blog are over 50, and the same is true of many other similar sites, from both sides of the political razor’s edge, what’s wrong with being “young”, anyway?

Are the “young” doomed forever to be guided by the fossilized thought processes of their elders? What’s wrong with them making up their own minds?

People on twitter are not all “leftists” and inner-city latte-sippers, and they’re not all “young” either.

Go look at the trolls on Emo’s twitter pages, or any other “leftist” tweeter: there are just as many right-wing trolls and barrackers there, swarming like a horde of locusts, as there are lefty supporters… probaby more.

For every “leftist” internet and social media “activist” I can supply you with your very own gutter-dwelling, strap-on toting “Larry Pickering”.

Twitter and facebook are not inherently “leftist” as the Oz’s editorial suggests. They are not genetically “inner-city elite”.

They are there for everyone to use, free at last from the shackles of the linear media, bound up with deadlines, the antiquated infrastructure of production, and column space restrictions.

Like television – with its scheduled delivery (because that’s the only way they can deliver program content) – newspapers have been hit by the asteroid of New Media, come to render the golden age of the print and broadcast dinosaurs gone forever.

Social media, blogs and the like are non-linear. You don’t have to wait around to see what Rupert Murdoch thinks through his ventriloquist’s dummies’ mouths. You don’t have to wait around to see what anyone says, because you can say what you want to say yourself, right or wrong, stupid or smart, accurate or not.

Or is there someone out there claiming that only the Old Media has a monopoly of common sense, decency, balance and truthful reporting? I’d like to hear them argue that without breaking out laughing.

"... an ill-informed editorial in The Guardian"?

Well, The Australian would cite The Guardian as “ill-informed”, wouldn’t it?

The Guardian was so “ill-informed” that it (almost single-handedly) exposed the rotten corruption at the heart of News Ltd (UK) and the putresence that permeates its management and its policy right to the top of the gravy train of the Murdoch family.

“Ill-informed” my arse! If Paul Kelly or the writer of this editorial have a right to scribble down a few stentorian thoughts and put them out to service the loss-making trickle of readership publications like The Australian has retained, then I reckon the world’s most successful, free, on-line newspaper site, run at a profit (not at a loss like Kelly’s rag) has a right to put its point of view, too. Even concerning things it shouldn’t know about, like Australian politics. I know who’d I’d trust to get it right.

I am reminded of the classic Blog Wars, when The Australian first railed against bloggers by name. That was the opening shot in an electronic class war that has gone on ever since.

The Australian lost the first battle, and – judging by their intransigence and the ostrich-like attitude betrayed in this editorial – will go on to lose the war.

What The Australian doesn’t like is that its dead-trees model, its pontification from on high business plan and its commercial failure at the hand of ex-readers who’d rather get their information elsewhere have all failed. And it’s spitting the dummy about it by doing exactly the thing that has caused it to become a subsidized dinosaur wondering what that big noise they heard was, just then.

It was the asteroid, people. The bolide of social media and non-linear news and comment consumption and generation: unfiltered, unedited, unexpurgated, unwholesome, feisty and free.

People don’t any more need to read The Australian and to go through its dinosaur droppings disguised as “informed commentary”, kindly present to us to provide “context” and “serious analysis” before they make up their minds.

And The Old Man, along with his faithful retainers, can’t stand the thought of it.


October 13. 2012 06:47 PM


Jason, why would anybody pay for one person's opinion of what the PM said (eg The Australian), instead of watching a (free) youtube clip of the ACTUAL SPEECH.  What the MSM can't stand is that they are no longer the gatekeepers - the public can easily find the source (Hansard etc) and don't need to be told what to think any more.  And when the MSM gets it wrong, as it did this week, it will hemorrhage viewers, readers and listeners.  Trust, once lost, is not easily regained.


October 13. 2012 07:42 PM


Hi Ad

This would be stupid of Julie Bishop wouldn't it:-

Keeping the Misogyny story in the headlines.

chris murphy ‏
JulieBishop has catcalled PM.Now she wants PM to apologise for saying Abbott is a misogynist for doing it #auspol www.dailytelegraph.com.au/.../story-e6freuzr-1226067502768

Mark Norton ‏
JulieBishopMP Julie Bishop only highlights the disgrace she is to women by attacking the PM

Deputy Opposition leader Julie Bishop demands PM Julia Gillard apologise for labelling Tony Abbott a misogynist @ 2.22pm

It is a vile slur, she should apologise to the women in Tony Abbott's life, and she should withdraw it,'' Ms Bishop said in a speech to the Liberal Party's Victorian State Council in Ballarat today.

Mike Bowers ‏
Insiders ABC 1 & NEWS24 9am Sunday-The Panel: SMH’s Lenore Taylor, AFR's Michael Stutchbury and the West Australian’s Andrew Probyn #auspol

Mike Bowers ‏
Insiders ABC 1 & NEWS24 9am Sunday-Barrie Cassidy interviews Climate Change Minister Greg Combet #auspol



October 13. 2012 07:50 PM


thnx for that posting of Bushfire Bill's comment. Superb. Should be used as a post.

I would check tho how much Facebook lost compared to Murdoch's assets.

Good stuff.

Put it up on my Facebook site.



October 13. 2012 08:05 PM


   "why would anybody pay for one person's opinion" that's the problem I don't want any one's "opinion" on something I saw for myself.
I want the media to adopt the "Fox News" slogan we report you decide!Or as the PM said herself "Don't write crap"!


October 13. 2012 08:06 PM

Ad astra reply

Hi Lyn
Thanks for the links.  Who but rusted-on Liberals would give any credence to anything Julie Bishop said.

Laurie Oakes continues to be a fence sitter.  He's no better that the rest.

I look forward to Insiders, wIth Greg Combet being interviewed.  I doubt if we will see any recognition from the panel that the Press Gallery has badly stuffed up reporting on the Gillard Speech and its antecedents.

Ad astra reply

October 13. 2012 08:45 PM


Fox News enjoys attacking Obama over the recent Libya episode...but how well did Fox News backed Bush Republicans do to protect Americans?:

Since "Mission Accomplished" (5/1/03) (the list)

Total 4347 deaths
In combat 3424 deaths


Reminder...from THE GUARDIAN...way back in Feb 2003

Their master's voice
Rupert Murdoch argued strongly for a war with Iraq in an interview this week. Which might explain why his 175 editors around the world are backing it too, writes Roy Greenslade

What a guy! You have got to admit that Rupert Murdoch is one canny press tycoon because he has an unerring ability to choose editors across the world who think just like him.

How else can we explain the extraordinary unity of thought in his newspaper empire about the need to make war on Iraq?

After an exhaustive survey of the highest-selling and most influential papers across the world owned by Murdoch's News Corporation, it is clear that all are singing from the same hymn sheet. Some are bellicose baritone soloists who relish the fight. Some prefer a less strident, if more subtle, role in the chorus. But none, whether fortissimo or pianissimo, has dared to croon the anti-war tune. Their master's voice has never been questioned.

Murdoch is chairman and chief executive of News Corp which owns more than 175 titles on three continents, publishes 40 million papers a week and dominates the newspaper markets in Britain, Australia and New Zealand. His television reach is greater still, but broadcasting - even when less regulated than in Britain - is not so plainly partisan. It is newspapers which set the agenda.

It isn't always clear exactly what Murdoch believes on any given issue, but this time we know for certain, courtesy of an interview in the Australian magazine, the Bulletin (which, by the way, he doesn't own). To cite the report of that interview in Murdoch's own Sydney Daily Telegraph, the "media magnate...has backed President Bush's stance against Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein".

Indeed, his quotes are specific. "We can't back down now, where you hand over the whole of the Middle East to Saddam...I think Bush is acting very morally, very correctly, and I think he is going to go on with it". Then came words of praise for Tony Blair. "I think Tony is being extraordinarily courageous and strong... It's not easy to do that living in a party which is largely composed of people who have a knee-jerk anti-Americanism and are sort of pacifist. But he's shown great guts as he did, I think, in Kosovo and various problems in the old Yugoslavia."

Most revealing of all was Murdoch's reference to the rationale for going to war, blatantly using the o-word. Politicians in the United States and Britain have strenuously denied the significance of oil, but Murdoch wasn't so reticent.

He believes that deposing the Iraqi leader would lead to cheaper oil. "The greatest thing to come out of this for the world economy...would be $20 a barrel for oil. That's bigger than any tax cut in any country."


Thnx to Greg Sheridan for stirring my Guardian memories.




October 13. 2012 08:51 PM


Just on James Ashby and his settlement with the Commonwealth!
I don't know if he's all that happy about the position the former speaker now finds himself or if Ashby was comfortable with the release of the "text messages " that caused the speaker to resign, because apart from the $50k he recieved there was this!

"According to the Government's settlement letter, Mr Ashby will remain employed by the Commonwealth until such time as Mr Slipper ceases to hold the office of Speaker.

It therefore says the longest period of time Mr Ashby can reasonably expect to remain on the Commonwealth payroll is until towards the end of 2013."



October 13. 2012 09:23 PM


Was flipping thru channels tonite and lo & behold who do I find, once again ad nauseum, criticising the government?

Yet another bitter ex-govt Laborite...from NSW.

Cassandra Wilkinson.

She was the transport advisor to former New South Wales Premier Kristina Keneally.

She is currently an opinion contributor to The Australian newspaper and regular commentator for Sky News Agenda and ABC The Drum.

Wilkinson was a freight expert holding the position of Director, Rail and Freight Policy in the New South Wales Ministry of Transport.

She was made redundant from this position in January 2009, following the New South Wales government decision to axe executive positions.

She was a Director in the Economics practice of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu before returning to work for Premier Kristina Keneally until the defeat of the Labor government in March 2011.

She currently works for Social Finance Pty Ltd.



Paul Edward McLeay (born 23 August 1972), a former Australian politician, was a member of the New South Wales Legislative Assembly representing the electorate of Heathcote for the Australian Labor Party between 2003 and 2011.

In 2010, McLeay resigned his position as a Minister on 1 September 2010 after he admitted using a parliamentary computer to visit gambling and porn websites.

He was the fifth minister to resign from Kristina Keneally's Labor government.

He is married to Cassandra Wilkinson, author, president of FBi Radio and senior public servant.

In 2009, he was appointed Minister for Ports and Waterways and Minister for the Illawarra.

In June 2010, McLeay was appointed Minister for Mineral and Forest Resources

McLeay is a Director of Engadine District Youth Services

Minister for Ports and Waterways
In office
17 November 2009 – 1 September 2010
Preceded by  Joe Tripodi

Succeeded by  Eric Roozendaal


So both lost their jobs. Tragic.

But does Cassandra have to be such a sad sack?

Doesn't she get paid on Sky/Sly News?

Isn't The Drum gig uplifting?

And all those other responsibilities?

Has she perhaps caught the RICHO virus?




October 13. 2012 09:29 PM


Social Finance, a Sydney-based organisation modelled on the UK social investment bank which developed the British bonds, will work with Mission Australia on a $7 million bond to assist 500 young adult repeat offenders for up to six years.

Peter Shergold, a Howard-era head of the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet and the chairman of the NSW Public Service Commission, will chair a social investment expert advisory group to oversee negotiations between government departments and the proponents.

He said the pilot program placed the state “at the leading edge of what’s happening globally”.



So much going on these days we're not aware of.



October 13. 2012 09:33 PM


Insiders ABC 1 & NEWS24 9am Sunday-The Panel: SMH’s Lenore Taylor

I like Lenore...even if she has acted lately like she's trying to escape from a press baron straightjacket.

Look into THE LIGHT



October 13. 2012 09:59 PM


Acerbic Conehead,
                Please excuse my bad manners, and accept my late acknowledgement of your recent work and say thanks! I enjoyed it a lot.


October 13. 2012 10:17 PM


I'm surprised the ABC haven't worked that out yet - perhaps somebody should point out the bias?

They've worked it out alright, MWS. Liealot's shills are running their ABC.

Ad astra @6.07pm, I agree absolutely. Arrogance and hubris writ large from these empty vessels, echoing their Chosen One.

Nas' @6.14pm, what a great story from Botswana! And so topical in this country considering all that's being thrown at our first female PM and her female ministers.

Handbag Hit Squad a club we wimmens should be proud to belong to.

"Discrimination against gender has no place in our modern day society."

A very wise judge. A pity this sort of progressive thinking is in such short supply in Liealot Universe.

.....the mainstream is still yearning for competent and trustworthy government.

Yay, Labor wins the next election! Well he did say competent and trustworthy.

Jason, thanks for that BB comment. So much easier that trying to sort through the labyrinth of comments, IF you can even latch on to them in the first place.


October 13. 2012 11:57 PM

Dan Gulberry


Brilliant!!! I laughed so hard the sides of my chaffbag jacket split.

Dan Gulberry

October 14. 2012 12:10 AM


AC @ 3:49 PM,
clever and brilliant.

Treading carefully, but being a little ageist, anyone who can remember Ian Dury and the Blockheads and Hit me with you rythm stick, circa 1978?, has got be 'old'(ish).

An old dog teaching us new schticks?


October 14. 2012 12:23 AM


Nasking @ 3:33 PM,
you are an apologist.

If I may be presumptuous, can I assume that you suggesting that I am an apologist for the MSM/Old Media in general. not Lenore Taylor in particular.

Oh well if that is your interpretation, so be it.

Out of interest, do you think that some commenters here are apologists for the current government when they defend (almost) every action that the government takes? Are any commenters here apologists for the fifth estate because in their view the fifth estate gets it 'right' each and every time and the fourth estate, or the msm/old media, gets it 'wrong' each and every time?

I make no apology that you have taken the view that I am an apologist just as I make no apology for having a differing view or interpretation of what is written by anyone.


October 14. 2012 12:27 AM


Ad @ 3:49 PM,
... the cartoon was curious. ... Was that the message she was sending?

I doubt that Lenore chose the illustation that went with the article. Who knows these days with all the downsizing and multitasking that goes on but, in the past it would be the picture editor or similar that would choose the pic/cartoon/illustration that would go with the article.

@ 4:01 PM,
... why did she not try to present a view different from the men, instead of going along with them?

Good question. I don't have an answer. I could hypothesise, even conjecture but that would be me choosing to read into it something that may not have been intended.

How you, I, or anyone else chooses to interpret the 'hidden meanings' or 'the context' is very much tied up in our own histories and prejudices and we all have different histories and prejudices or subtle variations of thereof.


October 14. 2012 12:40 AM


An interesting article from the real 'Rake'.

Gillard brought the house down
by Charles Waterstreet     SMH
When Abbott said this Parliament was covered in shame, he had both feet in his mouth and led with his glass jaw because people who throw punches or stones should not live in glass parliament houses. And the word was snatched from his mouth by Julia Gillard and shoved down his throat on Tuesday, in the most riveting, exhilarating, exhorting speech delivered in the house since Paul Keating hammered Hewson and Howard into submission on a daily basis. Gillard's speech channelled Margaret Thatcher, Germaine Greer and Martin Luther King jnr with the punch of Muhammad Ali.


October 14. 2012 01:55 AM


Don't lump me in with the 'they just don't get it' crowd or the 'real world' advocates. Be very careful to read only what I write and not what you choose to read into it.

Whoa, I did not intend to lump you in with any crowd, and, if that is what I did I APOLOGISE, after all I am apparently an apologist Tong

Maybe I should have include a catch cry from feminists: Don't get mad, get even

I note that you have, in your way, 'got even' with your further dissection.

... how is it that not one of them mentioned the separation of powers and the need for due process within the House?

I am having trouble with the separation of powers argument in this case, I suspect there is a misunderstanding of the concept and it is being used incorrectly as a 'justification' by some. Due process may have some merit as an argument, but again, not sure it is appropriate (accurate?) usage in this case. I need to read up a bit to refresh my understandings.

Just for a moment let's put our feet into a different pair of slippers (not sorry, just couldn't help myself with that dreadful one).

Imagine that Labor was the opposition in this parliament and Mr Slipper was speaker. It would not have been too hard for them to find some dirt to question his suitability for the position.

If the Labor leader of the opposition moved an SSO that 'snookered' the Liberal govt in a similar way, how many of those currently criticising Abbott's tactics would be applauding the Labor opposition for doing similar. Quite a few I suspect.

Going back to the quote above just a thought on read only what I write and not what you choose to read into it may I offer an umble observation that we could also be careful read only what those in the MSM write, not what we choose to read into it.


October 14. 2012 02:13 AM


thanks to the link to Waterstreet.

Interesting his comment ... people who throw punches or stones should not live in glass parliament houses. As I alluded to recently both parties are living glass houses with very many broken windows.

For some reason it reminded me of this:
If your marketing isn't working, it's either because your promises aren't useful (and big) enough or we don't believe you're the one to keep them. from one of my favoured oracles

While you are there have a look at Fighting with vs. fighting for

There is something I find serendipitous to current discussions in that little post.


October 14. 2012 02:15 AM


I better leave now, have to be on the road again at 5:00 am for another longish day with short visits back to base


October 14. 2012 07:01 AM


Gerard Henderson admits he was wrong

Mr Henderson, rather humiliatingly for someone of his importance, asked me to recall a meeting I had with him, “when in 2007 you were writing with The Age”. Well, I have never met Mr Henderson and have never worked at The Age.  I do know that Jason Koutsoukis did write for The Age around that time and may have met Mr Henderson. In 2007, I was living in London, heading global economic research for TD Securities. I can’t be sure, but suspect Mr Henderson is confusing a couple of woggy Greek names – Koukoulas, Koutsoukis – what’s a few letters here and there. Yasou!


So, Henderson is a regular on 'Insiders'...writes for the mainstream papers...has huge influence...

and yet makes such a basic mistake...undermining part of his argument.

Furthermore, as you'll have noticed in the article, Henderson gets his well-recorded FACTS wrong.

Yet another example of why it's best to read and view widely.

And take the MSM views, opining with a pinch (?)...perhaps bag...of salt.



a person who defends, in speech or writing, a faith, doctrine, idea, or action.

The Free dictionary

Definition of apologist
a person who offers an argument in defence of something controversial:
an enthusiastic apologist for fascism in the 1920s

mid 17th century: from French apologiste, from Greek apologizesthai 'give an account' (see apologize)

(Oxford dictionaries)

Corporate media

is a term which refers to a system of mass media production, distribution, ownership, and funding which is dominated by corporations and their CEOs. It is sometimes used as a term of derision to indicate a media system which does not serve the public interest in place of the mainstream media or "MSM," which tends to be used by both the political left and the right as a derisive term.

Propaganda model

Noam Chomsky and Edward S. Herman have established a propaganda model which purports to explain this bias. The common misinterpretation of this model is that all bias is conscious and centralized. The process however is hypothesized to be decentralized and operates as a confluence of factors that includes the overt pressure from owners and advertisers, but also by the gradual internalization of the biases and values of the corporate owners, leading to self-censorship.

Other factors include the tendency of journalists to avoid doing original research, instead obtaining news from the same few wire services, such as Reuters and Associated Press, which themselves tend to cover the same news under the same perspective.

Due to the desire to reduce operation costs, the mainstream media favor news pieces that are pre-made by these news agencies instead of conducting their own reporting.

Impact of public relations on news and public affairs programming

This same economic pressure makes media susceptible to manipulation by government and other corporate sources through the widespread use of press releases, often created by industry-funded public relations firms.


Perhaps the most infamous current example of the impact of the propaganda model on world events and societies was during the two year period following the 2001 US attacks.

During this time, according to a five year in-depth research project conducted by the Centre for Public Integrity; the President of the United States George W. Bush and seven high-ranking officials in his administration made at least 935 false statements about the threat posed to the world and to US national security by Saddam Hussein.

These false statements were virtually uncontested by the corporate media and presented as a sound rationale for both the 2003 invasion of Iraq and the "War on Terror".

The result was the "manufacturing of consent" for the invasion of Iraq and "The Global War on Terror/ism" in which hundreds of thousands of people have lost their lives to date.

As an example, Jessica Yellin on Anderson Cooper 360 admitted being pressured by corporate executives to present positive stories during the run up to the Iraq war.

Interlocking Corporations, Corporate Power, and its Social Influences

To illustrate the growing problem of monocracy, Bagdikian notes that in the 1980s, "less than 1 percent of all corporations, have 87 percent of all sales.

The corporates] are the aristocrats of the American Industrial economy; the remaining 359,500, in terms of their national power, are the peasantry.

"This conflict continues to arise as "dominant media companies are further [integrating] into the ruling forces of the economy."

The directorates of major companies interlock with others and control the content of multiple dominating media and information distribution, i.e. newspapers, magazines, radio and television companies, book publishers, film industries, and even multinational banking investors.

They become directly influenced by still other powerful industry, creating the "Endless Chain" of mass media and economic aristocracy

(Wardrip-Fruin, 479).



Be critical readers, listeners & viewers.




October 14. 2012 07:18 AM


That should be:

[The corporates] are the aristocrats of the American Industrial economy

And Australia. And the UK. And...

Spreading...like a virus.

Already in your neighbourhood.

Spread by local paper...delivered state and national papers...on yer box...in yer computer...on billboards...in yer supermarkets...yer workplace...papers delivered to schools, libraries, management...handed out and available at transport hubs, stations...sold on streets...on yer surveys...in yer political polls...

Be careful...the virus...could get YOU

Signs of illness: sleepwalking, herd mentality, voting against yer own interests, displaying and voicing irrational fears

Cure: Read, listen, view widely.
Further yer education, do wide research, become an active citizen, empower yerself.



October 14. 2012 07:43 AM


Why we MUST not let business interests and bigtime gamblers control sport:

GreenEDGE director White confesses to doping


'I too was involved' ... Matthew White has stepped down as GreenEDGE head sporting director.

Former Australian Olympian Matthew White has admitted to doping during his cycling career while he was a member of Lance Armstrong's team.


Putting profit and fame before integrity has become an obsession in this marketing, corporatised, performance addicted world...interconnected by corporate media.

How many professional sports are infected by the virus?

How can we TRUST?

Which corporate, business and gambling entities are making mugs of the general public? Who runs them?

Who benefits from trashing...and rigging...and corrupting...our sports?

They think they are UNTOUCHABLE.

They aren't.

Not when people...politicians...media...company figures...workers...get off their knees...and fight...for what's right.



October 14. 2012 09:38 AM



Melbourne Storm

Originally a Super League initiative and one of six NRL teams which are privately owned, the Melbourne club is currently 100% owned and operated by Rupert Murdoch's News Limited...major shareholder in FOX SPORTS.

Team of the decade
As part of their 10 year celebrations in 2007, Melbourne Storm released a team of the decade. The 17 man team was selected by former assistant coach Greg Brentnall, foundation CEO John Ribot, Daily Telegraph journalist Steve Mascord and board member Frank Stanton.


Orica-GreenEDGE is an Australian professional road race cycling team. Launched in January 2011, it competes on the UCI World Tour. The team is under the management of Andrew Ryan and Shayne Bannan with Neil Stephens and Matt White as Sporting Directors.The team ride Scott bikes and wear Santini clothing

The team has financial backing from Australian businessman Gerry Ryan who owns Jayco Australia.

Between 1998–2001, Melbourne was the only club to display player names on the back of jerseys. This was because there was no major sponsor for the Storm to display on the chest or back at the time.

In 2001, Melbourne gained its first major sponsor in Adecco, and was displayed on the jersey chest, while maintaining the players names on the back until the end of 2001. In 2002, the Storm removed the player's names and displayed Adecco's logo on the back.


1998: Nike
1999–2002: Fila
2003–04: Canterbury
2005–08: Reebok
2009–present: Kooga

Chest Sponsors:
1998–2000: None
2001–05: Adecco
2006–08: Medibank Private
2009–R6, 2010: ME Bank
R7-R26, 2010: Jayco
2011 – present: Crown Casino

Back Sponsors:
1998–2001: Player Names (top)
2002–2005: Adecco (top)
2006–R6, 2010: Host Plus (top and bottom)
R7-R26, 2010: Suzuki (top)/Jayco (bottom)
R1-26, 2011: None

2011 Finals: Harvey Norman (top and bottom)
R1-10, 2012: None
R12-26, 2012: Programmed (top)
2012 Finals: Programmed (top)/Anzac Biscuits (bottom)

Sleeve Sponsors:
1998-Late 1998: None
Late 1998–2003: Honda
2004: None
2005: Medibank Private
R1-R4, 2006: None
R6, 2006–2007: Mortgage House
2008–present: Suzuki

Shorts Sponsors
2001–2002: Accapac
2003–2004: Accapac (front) and Crazy Johns (back)
2005-late 2006: None
late 2006–2010: Jayco
2010–2011: Makita (front) and Jayco (back)
2012–present: Makita (front) and Harvey Norman (back)


Strange alliances...corporate sports.



October 14. 2012 10:15 AM


The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency

is a television comedy-drama series, produced by the BBC in conjunction with HBO, and based on the novels of the same name by Alexander McCall Smith. The novels focus on the story of a detective agency opened by Mma Ramotswe and her courtship with the mechanic Mr. JLB Matekoni.

The series was filmed on location in Botswana and was seen as one of the first major film or television productions to be undertaken in Botswana. (The Gods Must Be Crazy, a 1980 film set in Botswana was filmed mainly in South Africa.)

The programme began with a feature-length pilot episode on 23 March 2008. Executive producer, the late Anthony Minghella directed the episode and co-wrote the adaptation with fellow executive producer Richard Curtis. A six-episode series concluded in the UK on 19 April 2009. HBO began broadcasting the series on 29 March 2009. In 2010 the show won a Peabody Award for its 2009 season. It was cancelled due to poor ratings.

While HBO failed to renew the show after its first season, HBO announced in summer 2011 that the show may continue as two or more standalone films. The following year HBO revealed they had decided not to move forward with the project. Producers may look to resurrect the show on
another network.

Themes and topics of the stories

Women in traditional vs. nontraditional occupations, and Feminism
Rural way of life in Southern Africa, including muti, vs Urbanity and Modernity
Social relations in traditional African society
Christianity and traditional belief systems in contemporary Africa
AIDS and AIDS orphans in Sub-saharan Africa
Clinical depression
Emotional intelligence, Moral philosophy and Virtue ethics
Craftsmanship and Mechanics

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia







October 14. 2012 10:28 AM


Disgraceful...expected...Murdoch's News Corporation...threatening, cajoling, bullying employees.

WSJ's Strassel Celebrates CEO Letter Warning Staff Of Layoffs If Obama Is Re-elected


Wonder if same environment...message...pushed on Aussie News Ltd, Sky News, Punch blog employees?

And News International employees in UK?

Murdoch loves money and assets and empire more than employees.

A scared child...building a facade...a fortress.

Made of pillows.



October 14. 2012 10:34 AM


Limbaugh's Selective Memory: Conservatives Didn't Attack SCOTUS Nominees

Rush Limbaugh outrageously declared he and other conservatives "don't try to destroy" the careers of Democratic nominees to the Supreme Court.

But Limbaugh himself, backed up by the right-wing media, launched a string of vicious and offensive attacks on both Justice Elena Kagan and Justice Sonia Sotomayor during their appointment processes.

On his radio program today, Limbaugh attacked Vice President Biden for his debate performance, claiming he's "not a nice man" but has "mastered theatrics." He then went on to claim that Biden, like other Democrats, has "no compunction whatsoever in telling lies about decent, honorable people in the process of trying to destroy their careers." He insisted that "We Republicans do not do that. When the Democrats nominate Supreme Court justices or circuit court judges or whathaveyou, they generally get what they want. It's very rare that we try to deny them. And even when we do, we don't try to destroy these people":

But Limbaugh led a vicious smear campaign against both Elena Kagan and Sonia Sotomayor, the two justices nominated by President Obama.

During Kagan's appointment, in May and June of 2010, Limbaugh called her a "socialist" who will "spend the rest of her life destroying what we believe in if she's not stopped." He accused her of disavowing the Declaration of Independence and "throwing the Constitution down the toilet." He called on Senate Republicans to call her a liar and congratulated Republican Sen. Jeff Sessions for getting "as close to it as anybody on our side" will get. He launched baseless attacks on Kagan, falsely claiming she was anti-military and in favor of burning books.

During Sotomayor's hearings, Limbaugh accused her of being "the greatest living example of a reverse racist," even going so far as to compare her appointment to nominating white supremacist David Duke. He suggested that she and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton had to "make themselves victims" as a "route to power." He described both Sotomayor and Kagan as "not qualified" for the Supreme Court.

Limbaugh was not alone. The right-wing media joined him in his efforts to "destroy" the careers of both Kagan and Sotomayor.


Shock jocks eh?

Propaganda jocks more like it.

Socially engineering...full time.



October 14. 2012 10:52 AM


George Osborne's austerity is costing UK an extra £76bn, says IMF
New analysis of figures throws doubt on chancellor's forecast

Heather Stewart
The Observer, Saturday 13 October 2012 21.08 BST

George Osborne's drastic deficit-cutting programme will have sucked £76bn more out of the economy than he expected by 2015, according to estimates from the International Monetary Fund of the price of austerity.

Christine Lagarde, the IMF's managing director, last week caused consternation among governments that have embarked on controversial spending cuts by arguing that the impact on economic growth may be greater than previously thought.

The independent Office for Budget Responsibility used a "fiscal multiplier" of 0.5 to estimate the impact of the coalition's tax rises and spending cuts on the economy. That meant each pound of cuts was expected to reduce economic output by 50p. However, after examining the records of many countries that have embraced austerity since the financial crisis, the IMF reckons the true multiplier is 0.9-1.7.

Calculations made for the Observer by the TUC reveal that if the real multiplier is 1.3 – the middle of the IMF's range – the OBR has underestimated the impact of the cuts by a cumulative £76bn, more than 8% of GDP, over five years.

Instead of shaving less than 1% off economic growth during this financial year, austerity has depressed it by more than 2%, helping to explain why the economy has plunged into a double-dip recession.

Labour seized on the IMF's intervention as a vindication of shadow chancellor Ed Balls's argument that the cuts programme is self-defeating. "The IMF's analysis should be a wake-up call for David Cameron and George Osborne," said the shadow chief secretary to the treasury, Rachel Reeves. "It's time the prime minister and the chancellor listened to the evidence, accepted their plan isn't working and changed course."



And Coalition/LNP types heart OZSTERITY MEASURES




October 14. 2012 10:53 AM


Jane sometime yesterday questioned the strategy of bringing on the debate regarding Slipper so early in Question Time.  Margie Abbott's mediastorm the week before was part of the plan, to "demonstrate" that her (and our) hero Tony would never stoop as low as to send "disgusting" text messages - he respects women too much.  I suspect early this week there were a whole lot of LNP people lined up to have a go at the Government over various matters over the remaining 45 or so minutes.  What they didn't do was "war-game" it properly, they didn't ask the question "what happens if the ALP argue the point?"

Gillard argued in spades - and the plan (yet again) flew out the window - reminds you of the Coyote in the old Road Runner cartoons doesn't it.  Abbott admitted in Parliament the other day that the shame of a Government should have died by now.

The back up narrative which, was obviously thought up quickly, is to grab a word from Gillard's 15 minute oration and claim that as that word is wrong - the whole speech was.

Nas - the Storm is partly or fully owned by NewsCorp, they are also large shareholders in the Cowboys, the Broncos and one or two others I seem to remember.


October 14. 2012 10:53 AM


Loved it, Acerbic Conehead. Thank you!


October 14. 2012 11:06 AM


SKY UK are going fullbore exposing abuser Jimmy Saville and asking questions of the BBC, their competitor...and so they should.

BUT...are they FOCUSING enuff on...EXPOSING...CATHOLIC CHURCH...VATICAN PROTECTED...and other CHURCH-related abuse? Including CULTS.

Let not allegiances prevent you from TRUTH-TELLING





October 14. 2012 11:17 AM


Arms firms call up ‘generals for hire’

Arms firms call up ‘generals for hire’

Insight Published: 14 October 2012

TOP-RANKING retired military officers have been secretly filmed boasting about lobbying to win multi-million-pound defence deals for arms firms in breach of official rules.



My grandfathers served in the UK military during the wars...they were left emotional...one physical...messes.


You pompous, greedy, armchair imperialist top officers should be stripped of rank, financial support and honours.




October 14. 2012 11:22 AM


Nas - the Storm is partly or fully owned by NewsCorp, they are also large shareholders in the Cowboys, the Broncos and one or two others I seem to remember.


I'll or you will have to check that.

I find it disgraceful that news corporations owning shares and using sports channels/payTV networks...and those involved in gambling...

should be allowed to sponsor and own so called 'professional sports teams'.


but also inherently dangerous...imagine the possibilities for corruption, crime, rigging.

It's not on.



October 14. 2012 11:36 AM


Good Morning Ad and Everybody

Here is Twitterverse:

Tads ‏@Tadlette
Abbott died of shame remark gets a run in the most read and respected publication ever - The Economist http://econ.st/R4LVw4 #auspol

Peter Martin ‏@1petermartin
"Radio 2GB is running a protection racket": http://goo.gl/2CbME

Mr Denmore ‏
How did the MSM get it so wrong? Hear my discussion with @GreenJ on #abcrn www.abc.net.au/.../4311844

Gillard brought down the House, Charles Waterstreet
When Abbott said this Parliament was covered in shame, he had both feet in his mouth and led with his glass jaw because people who throw punches or stones should not live in glass parliament houses. And the word was snatched from his mouth by Julia Gillard and shoved down his throat on Tuesday, in the most riveting, exhilarating, exhorting speech delivered in the house since Paul Keating hammered Hewson and Howard into submission on a daily basis.  www.smh.com.au/.../...he-house-20121013-27jmn.html

Canberra's sex wars are underpinned by real sexual inequality in Aussie workplaces Jessica Irvine
In an extraordinary 15-minute speech last Tuesday, Australia's first female prime minister, Julia Gillard, gave voice to the silent rage of generations of Australian women.

Brisbane Times ‏
What the good folk of Fisher really think of Peter Slipper http://bit.ly/T0CO3w

David Marler ‏
#auspol #qldpol #destroyingthejoint "Interview With Madam Speaker Anna Burke" - http://ht.ly/es8SL

And PM Gillard's speech also featured on @BBCRadio4 The Women's Hour http://bbc.in/RrJAxd (thks @MichaelLAmbrose) + 1,336,600 YouTube hits

Anne Summers ‏
“vanOnselenP: Assuming thats true it sure is pathetic conduct... RT @Thefinnigans: @GBoroughGrowler http://twitpic.com/b3m5gw/full ” Pathetic? Gross

Jordan Baker
Fighting misogyny with Facebook; my column www.dailytelegraph.com.au/.../story-e6frezz0-1226494971911

Paul Howes ‏
My column in today's Sunday Telegraph on why Tony Abbott is not John Howard www.dailytelegraph.com.au/.../story-e6frezz0

Troy Ruivenkamp ‏
Touchy Stutchy! #insiders

Quit watching #insiders and listen to @SummersAnne on RN. Brilliant and real.

David Kirkpatrick ‏
Tony Abbott has set the tone of hatred in Oz politics & throughout Oz. That is the real story. #Insiders

Agnes Mack ‏
#insiders Barrie spot on. Impact of PM's speech missed by many commentators around country

Muscular Geek
The PM's history making feminist speech tops 1,336,600 Million views. http://youtu.be/ihd7ofrwQX0 Press Gallery in tears #auspol

Jack Sumner ‏
This week' #insiders should be renamed "Stutchbury exposed".

Atticus_Amber ‏
Since the Oz media badly misreported the #Gillard speech, have to ask, what else have they misreported about her? Time for a 2nd look maybe?

Bushfire Bill
Stutchbury is a walking, talking Lib stooge.His every point is straight down the line cliche, press gallery humbug. He is just a rat.Barrie is trying to shut him up, but not having much success.It’s the Michael Stutchbury Show.They certainly get agitated when they think their points aren’t being given the deference they believe they are due

Bushfire Bill
Posted Sunday, October 14, 2012 at 10:21 am |
I could see this coming…

In the panicked rush to the lifeboats the last vestiges of decency, fairness, and justice in Australian political life have been swept aside. The presumption of innocence has been thrown overboard as so much unnecessary baggage.

The media lifeboat, full to the scuppers with by-lined opinion writers, tries to distance itself from the suction that will be generated by the sinking of the traditional medium of the printed page. In the meantime, any poor wretch who tries to climb aboard to have their side of the argument heard is mercilessly shoved off with the sharp end of an oar for their trouble.




October 14. 2012 12:47 PM


lunch break
not a big fan of Henry Kiss of Death, oops, Kissinger but this morning on RN with @GreenJ someone quoted him:

There is no point waging a gender war there is too much fraternising with the enemy or wtte.

Seems to me fraternising with other genders is much more fun and far more productive than fighting 'em so I will begrudgingly agree with Kissinger.


October 14. 2012 01:03 PM


MIKE Tyson is in the red corner.

Coming out swinging for Julia Gillard and her impassioned speech to parliament about misogyny, Tyson says the Prime Minister is right: society is sexist.

In a tell-all interview with The Sunday Telegraph, the former heavyweight boxing world champion said he was a big fan of Gillard's prime ministership and the fact Australia has a female leader. "I think it's wonderful for the country," he said.
Tyson said he caught Gillard's fiery Canberra speech on TV news in Britain, while on tour for his one-man show, Undisputed Truth, which he will bring to the Sydney Convention Centre next month.

The 46-year-old said he was impressed with Gillard's performance, adding that Tony Abbott was a product of a sexist society.
Speaking with The Sunday Telegraph from his tour bus on Thursday, Tyson said:

"To be honest, history proves that she's right.
"I'm just going by the facts of what history proves, that most males are that way."

While admitting a chequered past of his own when it came to misogyny, Tyson said Opposition Leader Tony Abbott had some lessons to learn.

"That's the situation that the prime minister and [Abbott] have to deal with," Tyson said.



October 14. 2012 01:31 PM


Who said the Sunday papers have nothing of interest.

A snippet in the Brisvegas Sunday Mail this morning reports there is correspondence proving that if Whitlam had asked the Queen to sack John Kerr, she would have accepted the advice of "her" Prime Minister.

History could have been really different!


October 14. 2012 01:56 PM


If the Labor leader of the opposition moved an SSO that 'snookered' the Liberal govt in a similar way, how many of those currently criticising Abbott's tactics would be applauding the Labor opposition for doing similar. Quite a few I suspect.

You're probably right, DMW. But there is currently a court case involving Mr Slipper and that is the bone of contention, I think and the issue the PM was addressing in her speech.

However, even if that wasn't the case, the opposition would still have shot themselves in the foot, because Slipper was still a Liars MP when the texts were sent.

Add to that the fact that the Liars knew about Slipper and his peccadilloes for years and kept endorsing him for the seat of Fisher reflects badly on them.

It wasn't just the last election, it was the nine which came before. Hardly a testimonial to the integrity, honest and snappy judgement of the Liars Party.

And finally, when Slipper DID jump ship it was an Independent. Checkmate, I think.

The only thing is that the government have to sling it right back at them. Hammer home how long these moral giants took to spring into action wrt Mr Slipper's sexism.

And Coalition/LNP types heart OZSTERITY MEASURES

Of course, because they've obviously worked so well in Europe and Queensland. Nothing like a good old fashioned recession to warm the cockles of a Liars pea.


October 14. 2012 01:58 PM


thanks for the stuff on apologists.

Seems to me, from info you supplied, we would not have to look too far and we could find apologists here, there and everywhere. Doubt we would find them under beds as apparently there many reds still hiding under them.

Pondering it a bit further it seems that many would would qualify as apologists at one time or another. In fact apologists could be in the vast majority. Nice to know I am not on me pat malone.


October 14. 2012 02:00 PM


This may read a bit odd but I am missing the wisdom of psyclaw. I'm sure he could edumicate on separation of powers and due process.

Hope all is well with you psyclaw and your family worries have not been to draining.


October 14. 2012 02:22 PM


yes, there is a court case involving Mr Slipper.

Yes, the offending text messages were part of evidence in that case ferreted out by a journalist and presented in the public interest.

Although originaly private communications between two people they become public. The method and timing we could have discussions about but in the end I doubt that there was anything illegal done by the journalist or the publisher and to the best of my knowledge there is no action being considered against the journo.

Now that they are in the public domain we are able to come to a possibly considered position on whether Mr Slipper is/was a suitable person to Speaker of The House. Apart from the fact the texts were evidence in the case there is no connection whatsoever to us considering Mr Slippers position or his suitability.

The parliament could choose to deliberate on the matter and no matter what action it took it would have no bearing on the outcome of the case.

Parliament considering Mr Slipper's suitability would not interfere with the due process of the separate court case.

This is in part why I do not see a connection with the separation of powers argument as sacking or keeping Mr Slipper would not saying the action taken by parliament proves Mr Slipper's guilt or innocence and would not be saying to the court see we found him guilty/innocent therefore the court must find him guilty/innocent on totally separate charges because we have on the 'character test'.

No doubt there will be many who could come to a different conclusion but I don't understand how.

This is one of those Please Explain moments.


October 14. 2012 02:29 PM

Ad astra reply

Hi Lyn
Thanks for the interesting Twitterverse.  I agree with the comments made about Michael Stutchbury’s performance on Insiders.  Once economics editor for The Australian, he is now editor of AFR, but his pro-Coalition, anti-Gillard, anti-Government attitude persists as strongly as ever.  As BB says, he’s simply a Coalition stooge.

I have hours of mowing to do now.  This evening I’ll post another excellent piece from Victoria Rollison titled: Which politician is telling the truth?.

Ad astra reply

October 14. 2012 03:28 PM

Acerbic Conehead 2

Tony Abbott still thinks that his arrival into The Lodge is imminent. So, he is putting the final touches on his campaign and has invited a few female journalists to his office, so that he can appear to be well in with the girls.

The first journalist invited in for a private audience is Lenore Taylor.  After the initial banter, Tony makes a strange request.

Tones: Erm…Lenore…you know I’m no tech-head, so I was just wondering if you could do me a favour and send a few text messages for me…You see, Peta’s not around and when she is, she does them for me…and when I’m at home, Margie or the kids help me out…

Lenore (surprised, but flattered): Why, no problem, Tones!  What do you want me to say on your behalf?

Tones: Well…the first message is to Ged Kearney, the ACTU President…tell her that if she tells the Labor Party to piss off, and agrees to support me and the Coalition at the next election, I’ll ensure that afterwards the workers will be allowed to take over their businesses and Gina Rinehart will be put on a treadmill in the middle of the Great Sandy Desert…heh…heh…

Lenore (alarmed): Errr…Tones…don’t you think that sounds a bit Stalinist for the average punter?

Tones: Nah…don’t be a worry wart, Lenore…When I get in, I’ll be resuscitating WorkChoices, but I won’t mention that til after the bludgers have been sucked in…heh…heh…

[Lenore, knowing that Tones, in technological terms, doesn’t know his arse from his elbow, presses the delete, instead of send, button]

Tones: Now, Lenore…I want you to text the President of Indonesia, and say that if he announces he would rather work with me as PM instead of that witch Gillard, I’ll send a flotilla of boats over there and take all those refugees he is lumbered with off his hands…

Lenore (even more alarmed): Erm…Tones…that sounds like a bit too much of a back-flip on your current policy of “STOP THE BOATS!”

Tones: Nah, don’t worry…when I get in, I’ll just repeal John Howard’s gun laws, give all my bogan mates a bazooka and post them on the northern coasts, so that they can blow the shit out of anything that appears over the horizon…hee…hee…

[again, Lenore pretends to send the text message, but presses the delete button instead]

Tones: Fantastic, Lenore!  I can see Margie carrying me over the threshold of The Lodge as we text…heh…heh…Now, I want you to send a message to Ad astra at The Political Sword.  Tell him that if he stops writing those treasonous articles about me and my mates, and starts pouring some shit on Gillard instead, I’ll make him Propaganda Minister in my new Government…

Lenore (increasingly more alarmed): Erm…Tones…doesn’t that sound like interference with the doctrine of freedom of the press?

Tones: Huh…when I get in, I’ll be sending Ad astra off to a re-education camp, and making Tom of Melbourne chief boss-cockie of The Political Sword instead…heh…heh…

[Lenore can’t believe the Machiavellian audacity of Tones’ scams.  She blurts out]

Lenore: Now look here, Tones!  I’m totally aghast at the depths of depravity you are willing to sink to, in your scurrilous attempts to get into The Lodge…Why, those texts you wanted me to send are nothing but con jobs…And, for your information, I only pretended to send them – they got Gillarded instead!!  So there!!

Tones: Huh…Women!!  Always changing their bloody minds!!  I thought you have been saying recently that con texts are very important!!

[Lenore, in total disgust, gets up to go]

Tones: Yeah, piss off, why don’t you…And on your way out, tell Annabel and Latika to come in…They’ll have no compunctions about sending off my con texts – they’re real good loyal girls…heh…heh…

Acerbic Conehead 2

October 14. 2012 04:07 PM


   "the offending text messages were part of evidence in that case ferreted out by a journalist and presented in the public interest"

Well no! they were released by the court for public consumption, no need for an investagative journo for that!
clutching at straws here DMW.


October 14. 2012 04:25 PM


Abbott's lied his way into a meeting with the President of Indonesia.


From the final two paragraphs:

"Mr Abbott is visiting Jakarta with his foreign affairs spokeswoman, Julie Bishop, immigration spokesman Scott Morrison and agriculture spokesman John Cobb.

He said this visit had been ''a few months in the making'', but it has been hastily arranged and, until Friday, some key Indonesian officials, including the Foreign Affairs Department, knew little about it."

He'll lie here, he'll lie there, wherever he finds himself, he'll lie and lie and lie, and funnily...(???) never dies of shame.


October 14. 2012 04:32 PM



It's good to see you. I've been toying with the idea of sending up a flare.
I hope all is well with you.




Just because I like typing it and rolling it around my inner-tongue.


October 14. 2012 04:34 PM


I was working at ATSIC when Stuchbury was editor at The Australian. He was one of ATSIC's most vicious critics, and indeed one filled with racist bile against Aboriginal people.

Despite Howard being surrounded with competent and capable policy advisers, he let Stuchbury drive his policies based on his editorials. Howard would claim that he was listening to the will of his people. Disgraceful.

Stuchbury was hated at ATSIC. Those who met with him referred to him as a racist ****. Even from those who knew him personally, myself included.

To think I went to school with him and played in the same footy team.

You will be pleased to know he was only an average player. Unlike me.

What on earth happened to him? Only ten years ago he was the only journalist who tried to expose Howard's lies about children overboard. Yet a few years later he is pandering to the guy.


October 14. 2012 04:38 PM


DMW, I disagree. Until there is a judgement, I think there should not be a witch hunt conducted by Parliament. In fact, there should not be a witch hunt at all.

As to Mr Slipper's suitability for the position of Speaker, he should be judged by his conduct in that role. I doubt that there is anyone who could argue that he was not one of the best and most able Speakers to sit in the Chair.

The whole affair was just another shabby gotcha stunt by this opposition leader and his grubby band of cheerleaders.

And considering their track record for grubby and underhanded goings on, it would behove them to STFU.

While I don't condone the tacky content of Mr Slipper's texts, I would also say that comments of that nature would be made in every front bar of the country, every day.

And also at barbeques and workplaces. Smutty, unpleasant, demeaning and sexist? Yes. But in Mr Slipper's defence, I note that he is an equal opportunity sexist. The references to male tackle weren't too flattering or edifying either.

Be that as it may, I fail to see how these texts make him unsuitable for the role of Speaker.

Far worse, imo, is this opposition leader's sneering, hate filled, contemptuous reference to the Prime Minister of this country as SHE, THIS prime minister, HER and on and on.


October 14. 2012 06:49 PM


Have just now read Lyn's twitpic link. Speaking of sexism, chauvinism and misogyny, Prissy and Sloppy beat anything Slipper may have texted.

Apart from the vapid behaviour one would expect from a pair of gormless teenagers, Sloppy and Prissy have illustrated why the Noalition should be castigated by all right thinking people and why the PM let fly.

How the msm can possibly justify their ongoing support for this mob of bottom feeders is beyond me. Perhaps Mr Stutchbury can be asked to to put a positive spin on that example of Liars Party behaviour.


October 14. 2012 07:07 PM


NormanK, hi.

Not sure I would have seen the flare. I was so far out of town it was steam-driven internet territory.

Good to be back, though.

I don't know what the Indonesians are doing, allowing their head of government (and state) to be used as a prop by Abbott.

It doesn't matter what they say to him, in public or not, he'll tell us it was all about how they're just champing at the bit to work with a 'good government'.

The man clodhops wherever he steps, but his hosts are always too polite to make comment. Or too gobsmacked to believe he can hold the position he does, which boils down to the same thing.


October 14. 2012 07:52 PM

Ad astra reply

I’m glad Lenore Taylor ‘Gillarded’ Tony Abbott’s text messages.  He’d better get used to being Gillarded, as he has got plenty more to come.  I see the YouTube of her address has now over 1.4 million views.  Tony Abbott’s humiliation has been seen 1.4 million times!

Thank you again for your splendid contribution to TPS.

I’m about to post the next piece, but I’ll leave this one open until tomorrow.

Ad astra reply

October 14. 2012 08:05 PM

Ad astra reply

I have just now posted another excellent piece from Victoria Rollison: Which politician is telling the truth?.  Enjoy.


Ad astra reply

October 14. 2012 08:11 PM

Tom of Melbourne

”As everyone knows, Margie, the girls and he live just around the corner from Macquarie Square and their house is now worth only a fraction of what they paid for it when they took out that great big fat mortgage.”

What a brave comment!!

Introducing the subject of real estate to this blog, given Julia’s interesting background and involvement in the subject.

Yes, the PM has always had the best advice.

Her previous boyfriend was a very astute investor in real estate, suing to great effect Gillard’s legal expertise to help set up the funds that he defrauded to invest in housing.

Her current one is both a former real estate salesman and a hairdresser!!

Personally, I think it is a great step for this blog to start poking fun at the partners of politicians and their real estate success stories.

Tom of Melbourne

October 14. 2012 08:24 PM


   Good to see a liar and a scumbag such as yourself can be relied upon to break the self imposed boycott!
You make all sorts of wild claims under the cloak of anonminity because you're no better than a "rock spider"
About time you put up "big boy"!


October 14. 2012 08:36 PM

Tom of Melbourne

I’ve not been on any “self imposed boycott’ Jason. I’ve been busy with both work and leisure.

It seems that the unsavoury relationships of Gillard and her involvement in the setting up of the “slush fund” that was defrauded by her boyfriend, has a long way to go.

I note that none of Gillrd’s colleagues are overtly agreeing eiht her “women hater” label.

That’s the common characteristic about mindless ALP types, they lapse into name calling rather than orderly discourse.

You’re just a clear example of one with that inclination Jason.

Tom of Melbourne

October 14. 2012 08:43 PM


   You can prove all the "allegations" against the PM?


October 14. 2012 10:46 PM


Con texts! Love it AC.

<blockquote>What a brave comment!!</blockquote>

Nearly as brave as Anal Jones and Liealot attacking a dead pensioner.

Wow! The first bloke has had two careers! Obviously the crime of the century.

More muckraking of the Anal Jones variety; all bullshit and complete lies. About what we expect from you ToM. How about some proof? Just the usual crap from Menzies House.


Comments are closed