News Limited’s undeclared war on the Rudd Government

If you doubt if there is a war, look at the News Limited papers over the last few days. 

First, look at Rudd stimulus drove up rates by David Uren in Friday’s Australian which begins “The rapid jobs growth of the past five months has come to a halt, with new figures showing it was driven more by the government's stimulus programs than by underlying strength in the economy, as the Reserve Bank believed.”  So far so good – isn’t that what the stimulus was supposed to do?  Uren then goes on to say “The RBA has relied on the apparent strength of the labour market to justify its rapid run of interest rate rises.”  He then says “The latest figures suggest the RBA has been raising rates in response to stimulus, rather than real underlying growth in the economy. The RBA has made it clear it has relied more on the jobs number as a guide to the strength of the economy than the national accounts.”  Note the word ‘suggest.  No certainty there, but the headline says unequivocally Rudd stimulus drove up rates.  No ifs or buts – the conclusion is definite. 

If you have the inclination, read the rest of the article and see if you can find evidence to clinch, even merely support, Uren’s assertion.  I looked several times but could find none.  Tell me if you can.  There’s lots of other data, but none that proves Uren’s point – it’s all supposition, all suggestion.  But that’s good enough for the unambiguous headline.  So why is it there?  Is it just another salvo in the undeclared war?

Then look at Dennis Shanahan’s Pension rise hit by rate gouge in The Weekend Australian of 13-14 March that begins “Hundreds of thousands of pensioners expecting a pension rise of up to $29 a fortnight next week may instead face a cut because of the Rudd government's belief in the strength of the economic recovery.”  Note that if it’s bad for pensioners, it’s the Rudd Government’s fault.  So what’s this story about?  You’ll have to read Shanahan’s article carefully to find out, but what it’s about is, as Jenny Macklin says, "As the economy recovers from the global economic crisis, rates of return on investments are also beginning to increase...As a result, the deeming rates, which are used to assess income from a range of financial investments held by pensioners and other income-support recipients, will also increase on March 20 from the record low levels during the global financial crisis."  Deeming goes back to the Hawke-Keating era and was applied during the Howard era.  It is simply a way of adjusting pensions for pensioners whose income is derived partly from investments or bank interest.  As interest rates go down and pensioner income falls the deeming rate compensates for this by increasing the part pension, and when they rise, vice versa.  So as interest rates are now rising, pensioner income from that source should also be rising. 

But here’s the catch.  Some banks have not fully passed on the rises in Reserve Bank rates to depositors, and so they have been caught short.  The villains are the banks, not the Government as Shanahan’s article subtly implies.  Well into the article you will read “Kevin Rudd said yesterday the banks were ‘gouging’ customers over rate rises and urged people to shift accounts to other banks if they were being unfairly treated.  Asked if the Reserve Bank was right in saying banks were gouging customers over interest rates rises, the Prime Minister said the RBA was ‘absolutely right’.”  So the PM condemns the bank’s gouging, yet the thrust of the article is that the pensioners’ dilemma ought to be laid at the Government’s feet, which Shanahan does with his first paragraph “Hundreds of thousands of pensioners expecting a pension rise...may instead face a cut because of the Rudd government's belief in the strength of the economic recovery.”  This is disingenuous reporting.  Shanahan knows few will read and digest the full article so he uses a heading that raises hackles, writes an initial paragraph that accuses the Government, and I suppose hopes few will read the whole piece and realize that what the Government is doing is routine for all governments and that the real culprits are the banks over which the Government has no control.  Another shot in the undeclared war?

Other headlines in the 12 and 13/14 March issues of The Australian read Combet can’t quantify stuff-up;  Tax review gets airing as PM caves in;  Remote housing initiative at crisis point; Consumers foiled by deathly debacle; Labor locks in negative message; Abbott told to get ‘out of the road’; Housing plan ire may evict (Maxine) McKew; PM moves on health roadblock; Reserve tipped to keep rising rates; and Curt Rudd spoils for a health fight, a reference to the snub Rudd is accused of giving Kristina Keneally at the beginning of their talks on Friday which Imre Salusinszky describes in his opening paragraph thus: “It was a moment which in the annals of political incivility, will rank alongside Mark Latham’s power handshake on John Howard in 2004.”   Keneally denies the snub, as does Rudd.

Then in the op-ed section there is Peter van Onselen’s Abbott’s scheme is perfectly Liberal, a piece where his tortured logic ‘proves’ beyond doubt that Abbott’s PPL is patently in line with Liberal principles going as far back as Menzies, and the Editorial, titled Softly-softly the right line on stimulus spending, a line pursued relentlessly by News Limited journalists particularly economics editor Michael Stutchbury.  The Cut & Paste section begins A billion here, a billion there, and pretty soon even Chris Uhlmann starts to believe you – Kevin Rudd spins a ripping yarn on health funding, which canvasses Abbott’s ‘ripping of $1 billion out of the health care system’.

It’s a sad chronicle that leaves one wondering if the Rudd Government has done anything right at all, whether it has any runs on the board, whether it has any worthwhile accomplishments such as shielding this country from the worst effects of the GFC, whether it is, as the Opposition says and many in the media parrot, ‘all talk and no action’, whether it has any worthwhile plans, indeed any plans at all.  Looking for a positive note is tedious, time consuming and unfruitful. 

When just one paper, day after day, is so universally negative to the Government, it make one wonder what it’s about.  This piece asserts that it’s about being at war with the Rudd Government.  So was the award this January to Rudd of The Australian’s ‘Australian of the year’ just window dressing to allow the paper to attack him relentlessly thereafter, but still claim a positive line: ‘we gave him the award’.  What do you think?

But it’s not just one paper – it’s the whole stable of News Limited papers.  Just another example – Melbourne’s Herald Sun of March 11 bore a strident front page headline Your money down the drain with a photo of four footballers clad in towels after a shower  Its sub-head was  REVEALED: Rudd in more hot water over waste.  It began “This is the photo that damns the Rudd Government’s reckless spending on stimulating the economy.  Tiny Koondrook Barham Football Club on the Murray River has been handed 17 new hot water systems, almost one for every player in the team.”  On ABC 774 radio the same day, the President of the Club explained to Jon Faine that there were several football teams, not one, and netball teams as well, all serviced by the showers and that they often required showers at the same time.  He did not give the impression that the showers were excessive.  The Herald Sun article left the feeling that there was only one team using the showers, which was its intention as it was aimed at painting the Rudd Government in the worst light.  Again disingenuous journalism aimed at damaging the Government.

Today, 15 March, in The Australian the online headlines are Abbott accuses PM of bullying states over health.  It is not until the fourth paragraph that one reads a positive statement “Mr Rudd today pledged to double the available places for medical students to become GPs.”  But the following paragraph quotes Tony Abbott’s derision of the announcement.  Then there is a piece by Tom Dusevic John Howard tips 'authentic' Tony Abbott for election battlewhich allowed John Howard to vent his angry feelings about the Rudd Government.  Another piece features headlines Tony Abbott reopens culture wars over nods to Aborigines.  Kim comments on TPS that the headline that topped the printed version of The Australian, which I haven’t seen, was more on the insulation saga.  I couldn’t find it online.  I looked for pieces positive for the Government, but could not find any.  Could you?

There’s no point in giving more examples; just open any News Limited paper any day and there they are.

Argue as much as you might that this is just normal behaviour for News Limited outlets no matter who is in government and that no ill intent is intended.  But it’s drawing a very long bow to deny that this is not an all out assault on the Rudd Government with the intent of bringing it down and replacing it with the natural party to govern, the Liberal Party.  

If you need evidence about how this is possible in a democratic society where the people are the ones who evaluate and select the government, not the media, read the 14 March piece in The Washington Post by Howell Raines Why don't honest journalists take on Roger Ailes and Fox News?  Roger Ailes, chief of Fox News in the US, is accused of “...using the network to conduct a propaganda campaign against the Obama administration – a campaign without precedent in our modern political history.”  It also attests to how much influence Rupert Murdoch exerts over his outlets and laments: “Why can't American journalists steeped in the traditional values of their profession be loud and candid about the fact that Murdoch does not belong to our team? His importation of the loose rules of British tabloid journalism, including blatant political alliances, started our slide to quasi-news. His British papers famously promoted Margaret Thatcher's political career, with the expectation that she would open the nation's airwaves to Murdoch's cable channels. Ed Koch once told me he could not have been elected mayor of New York without the boosterism of the New York Post.”  If that’s Murdoch’s style elsewhere, why should we expect it to be different here?

It really does look as if Murdoch’s News Limited is waging a similar war here, an undeclared war on the Rudd Government.

What do you think?  Persuade me otherwise.

POSTSCRIPT:  Readers interested in media manipulation will enjoy reading a series begun by Crikey today Spinning the Media.  The first in the series is Over half your news is spin.  It concludes "Our investigation strongly confirms that journalism in Australia today is heavily influenced by commercial interests selling a product, and constrained and blocked by politicians, police and others who control the media message." 

PPS :You may also be interested to read Welcome to the world’s first murdochracy by John Pilger published in On Line opinion today.

We are not imagining it.

Rate This Post

Current rating: NaN / 5 | Rated 0 times

bilgedigger

15/03/2010(Not sure if this comment fits here or on the previous essay - probably on both). After the weekend furore about Kevin Rudd's meeting with the NSW Premier and the supposedly "icy" or "cruel" way in which he allegedly treated her (discussed with great animation on Insiders yesterday); it was a real treat today to see Skynews Agenda with David Speers. In picking up the theme, showing "the evidence" of the cold-shoulder treatment which Fran Kelly, Glen Milne, Samantha Maiden and others have done their best to promote over the period. However they started the newsclip a fraction too early and what did we see - the Prime Minister and Kristina Kenneally both laughing over some comment and then "getting down to business" as the P.M. said. It is only this latter part that has been shown on television. I'll bet that this will be carefully edited by Skynews before it gets repeated tonight but fortunately I was recording for another purpose and have captured it. I'm more than happy to share it around and indeed have been busy with my copy skills already. The campaign of demeaning and denigrating an Australian Prime Minister has continued since this Government was elected and the News Ltd. stable have been at the forefront of this vindictive campaign. It is aimed personally at Kevin Rudd and not at a Government as such - much as they dislike the Labor Party. Fairfax Press is not innocent in this, nor the ABC. Certain of their journalists seem patently incapable of reporting a story in a straightforward manner, and I include Crikey in this sweep as well. The disenfranchisement of voters who did not vote Liberal at the last election has continued mercilessly in the oppositional and obstructive role the Liberal Party has played in both Houses. Perhaps enough people will get sufficiently angry about this and start to fight back in ways that the media will have to take notice of. If I cancel my newspapers and subscriptions nobody will worry too much, but if large numbers of readers not only cancel but send letters to the Editors and emails to Members in marginal electorates perhaps they will.

lyn1

15/03/2010Hi Ad Thankyou for another wonderful article on our favourite subject, we are definately not imagining it. I read David Uren piece twice and the is nothing at all to prove anything he is saying. Headlines and Tony Abbott saying Kevin Rudd is causing pensioners to lose money is a lie and utterly false anyone should be able to work that out. So some people are self funded retirees, along comes the Wall Street crash (Liars Poker) people had say $400,000 in investments ,they lost $150,000, now they can qualify for a part pension, remember Wayne Swan saying go to centrelink. That is exactly what happened. Now the economy is recovering the share prices have improved, those investments have risen (maybe not to what they were), but these people now have too much money to qualify for the pension. If you ask me I would say anyone with too much money to qualify for the pension should be very happy indeed. Then all this is misconscrued by Tony Abbott, distorted by Dennis Shanahan and Msm, Shanahan said, I think from memory "thousands of pensioners who were expecting a rise in the pension will in fact lose money" hows that for twisting the facts, it is Kevin Rudds fault he gives with one hand and takes with the other. [b]I have said all along THEY THINK WE ARE STUPID[/b] [b]LABORS BEST ALL YEAR ESSENTIAL POLL [/b]OUT http://blogs.crikey.com.au/pollytics/2010/03/15/essential-report-labors-best-all-year/

bilgedigger

15/03/2010P.S. I've just caught up with other comments on the previous post and am glad to see that similar sentiments are being expressed there. After watching Lyn1's clip from YouTube perhaps we should all adopt the motto "Ele sempre vai a forra" so beautifully espoused by Groucho Marx.

BH

15/03/2010Come on bilgedigger - are you able to put that clip somewhere. I missed it on Agenda but it always seemed strange that there was nothing before that clip. AA - I know you like reading the Australian but I just can't bring myself to buy it or read it nowdays. I don't mind criticism of Labor when necessary but surely they are doing some things right. I read that piece in the Washington Post and wondered whether it would even resonate with the people it is meant for. I've notice that some of the tweets sent out by a few Murdoch journos do not reflect what they write in the paper. They seem to be able to criticise the Libs in tweets but don't dare do it in their articles. Are we hammering the journos. who are probably trying to keep a roof over their heads, when we should be bombarding the management and shareholders of LimitedNoos.

lyn1

15/03/2010Hi Ad Putting up the link to video again because some people may have miss it, being down the bottom of the post: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e7cry-4pyy8&NR=1 Bilgedigger that youtube clip of Groucho Marx was played in the background on the Insiders yesterday, when they were talking about the Liberals opposing everything and Glenn Milne didn't like it either. (I'll bet that this will be carefully edited by Skynews before it gets repeated tonight but fortunately I was recording for another purpose and have captured it. I'm more than happy to share it around and indeed have been busy with my copy skills already). Your words bilgedigger). Can you post your copy of that Kristina Keneally and Kevin Rudd clip on The Political Sword, that would be wonderful. It just proves the length they will go to in desperate attempts to belittle, blacken Kevin Rudd and the Labor Government, Anyway how come this frenzied furore was worthy of more news today anyway. This is all over the place tonight looks like another gaffe by Abbott wonder what News Ltd will report tomorrow http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/article7062045.ece

lyn1

15/03/2010Hi Ad and everybody Here is Grog on Question time today, brilliant piece by Grog again, exactly as it happened. In fact more accurate than watching: http://grogsgamut.blogspot.com/2010/03/on-qt-there-wont-be-blood.html

Sir Ian Crisp

15/03/2010Ad Astra, Howell Raines is not the best person to cite as being a credible source. Raines might be looking to settle a few scores following his censure over the Jayson Blair fiasco. Raines might just be the USA's version of that nasty man Shanahan. And I haven't wavered one little bit AA. When I go past my local paper shop and The Oz has a big bold banner bleating the latest bile I avert my eyes. If it does come to war I'd like to be considered for a commission. Maybe Lt Colonel or higher.....?

Ad astra reply

15/03/2010Folks A fascinating political night on TV. I’ll respond to comments in the morning. Yes Lyn1 Possum’s headline on [i]Pollytics[/i] was [i]Essential Report – Labor’s best all year[/i] with a TPP 56/44 and other interesting questions. Dennis Shanahan’s advance notice of [i]Newspoll[/i] tonight is headed [i]Kevin Rudd's approval at lowest point: Newspoll[/i] He goes on to say [i]"Rudd's personal approval is at its worst since he became Prime Minister and his satisfaction with voters is at its worst since he became Leader of the Opposition in December 2006. After taking the blame for Government mistakes and broken promises and releasing his public hospital plan Kevin Rudd’s satisfaction rating has dropped three points to 48 per cent, in the last two weeks according to Newspoll, the first time he’s below 50 per cent as Prime Minister and dissatisfaction with Mr Rudd is at a new high of 41 per cent. Read more in Tuesday's The Australian."[/i] http://www.theaustralian.com.au/politics/kevin-rudds-approval-at-lowest-point-newspoll/story-e6frgczf-1225841116698 But there’s nothing else. Why no TPP? If it was bad for Labor would he be able to resist revealing it? The morning will tell.

Ad astra reply

15/03/2010What the Papers Say [i]Newspoll[/i] TPP 52/48, same as last [i]Newspoll[/i]. Rudd 25 points ahead on PPM. No comment that Abbott's position has improved.

HillbillySkeleton

16/03/2010Hi Guys! I have included the following link because it has some important things to say which can be touchstones for our own critiques of the Conservatives in this country, and their tactics and the psychological strategies that underpin them. Also, I'd like AA to look down the bottom of the page at a new innovation that AlterNet have incorporated into their blog, which allows the reader to either make a comment on the article, OR submit a blog of their own which bounces off the article in a new direction. I wonder if this blog engine is able to incorporate such a function? http://blogs.alternet.org/speakeasy/2010/03/15/matt-taibbi-how-tea-partiers-are-getting-tricked-by-the-rich/ Finally, I would just like to say that I have been intimidated by the breadth and the depth of AA's latest missive, but hope to overcome my trepidations and post a reply later on. Cheers! HS.

Michael

16/03/2010I'd say the war is well and truly declared every day of the week. Murdoch's press are just too gutless to front up and admit it. The headlines at the ABC's news site aren't too different in terms of preempting (or, indeed, contradicting) the actual content of the following text with a misleading headline, either. And I can never forget how the phrase "Work Choices" was actually inserted into the introduction of an online piece by Heather Ridout for The Australian a month or so back. The introduction was verbatim a paragraph from Ridout's article, except... "Work Choices" was not in her paragraph, or indeed anywhere else in the article. This might be something to keep an eagle eye out for as well. Slanted headlines AND edited precis's, set up to catch out anyone who does read past the headline, but maybe relies on the introductory precis/quote when deciding whether to click through to the whole article. I certainly felt disappointed in what I understood of Heather Ridout's take on industrial relations until I read the whole article and realised that she had been sub-editorially done over. I wonder how many writers, commentators, columnists, have their work, their opinions, and thus their integrity, played with so fast and loosely in Murdoch media?

FFreddy

16/03/2010This piece highlighting the disconnect between headlines and content reminds me of one of the more amusing things I’ve seen in the Australian over the years. It goes back to a time, way back!, when Mark Taylor was captain of the Oz cricket side and the poor bloke couldn’t have an itchy bum without PM Howard being there to scratch it and a drooling media on hand to record it for the public. More specifically it was the time when Shane Warne and Mark Waugh had been rumbled over payments from Indian bookies. On the inside back page appeared a full half-page article by Mike Coward with the screaming headline “Players let down teammates, fans and PM.” I read this quite lengthy article three times just to be sure. Prime minister John Howard was not mentioned once in the article.

lyn1

16/03/2010[b]TODAY'S LINKS[/b] http://www.abc.net.au/4corners/content/2010/s2842861.htm http://www.abc.net.au/4corners/special_eds/20100315/abbott/ http://blogs.crikey.com.au/pollbludger/2010/03/16/newspoll-52-48-5/ http://mumble.com.au/ http://blogs.crikey.com.au/pollytics/2010/03/16/newspoll-tuesday-groundhog-day-edition/ http://theorstrahyun.blogspot.com/search/label/Tony%20Abbott http://blogs.crikey.com.au/purepoison/2010/03/16/whats-all-that-about-2/ http://rumcorps.net/mangledthoughts/2010/03/15/liberal-party-tribulation-tony-abbott/ http://larvatusprodeo.net/2010/03/15/coalition-wedges-itself-on-parental-leave/ http://blogs.crikey.com.au/thestump/ http://www.onlineopinion.com.au/view.asp?article=10175 http://loonpond.blogspot.com/ http://northcoastvoices.blogspot.com/ http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2010/03/16/2846874.htm http://www.news.com.au/national/kevin-rudd-hits-new-low-with-voters/story-e6frfkvr-1225841163144 http://www.theaustralian.com.au/politics/kevin-rudds-approval-at-lowest-point-newspoll/story-e6frgczf-1225841116698 http://player.video.news.com.au/theaustralian/#1440958080 http://blogs.news.com.au/heraldsun/andrewbolt/index.php/heraldsun/comments/rudds_woman_problem/

Amos Keeto

16/03/2010Nicely done yet again. When that Australian of the year stuff came out somebody asked somewhere what it was all about and my answer at the time was " To justify all the crap they're about to write against Rudd for the rest of the year" I reckon that's looking okay.

Bushfire Bill

16/03/2010Newspoll's 2PP didn't change (steady to within +/- 1 now for four polls), Abbott's approval rating went backwards, Rudd remains 25 points ahead on PPM and what did Shanahan write? [i]"KEVIN Rudd's personal approval is at its worst since he became Prime Minister and his satisfaction with voters is at its worst since he became Leader of the Opposition in December 2006."[/i] That was it. While Rudd's rating did drop 3 per cent, the relentlessly negative Shanahan only mentions the bad news for Labor, not the fact that for four polls the Coalition has made little progress while their leader languishes in the toilet bowl of approval to run the nation.

lyn1

16/03/2010[b]TODAY'S LINKS (PART 2[/b]) The orstrahyun doesn't work so here it is again http://theorstrahyun.blogspot.com/2010/03/tony-abbott-is-continuing-to-use-term.html http://guttertrash.wordpress.com/2010/03/16/tony-abbott-an-intellectual-nobody-says-paul-keating/ http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/stories/s2845875.htm?WT.mc_id=newsmail http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/opinion/so-much-baggage-just-may-not-fly/story-e6frg6zo-1225841111501 http://www.couriermail.com.au/news/opinion/john-howard-pleased-with-progess-of-tony-abbott-his-keenest-pupil/story-e6frerff-1225841118132 http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/opinion/for-pms-past-and-present-its-all-in-the-delivery/story-e6frg6zo-1225841113485

kerry

16/03/2010@ bilgedigger (March 15. 2010 06:43 PM) Didn't see the brouhaha re Rudd and Kenneally (only heard about it), and I wondered why Rudd would show such temperament in front the the cameras. It all makes sense now. So, the tape was doctored to show Kenneally's warm welcome and instantly cuts to a brusque Rudd saying let's get on with business. Who's tape was it? Courtesy of which network? Surely there was more than one network filming this meeting? What about the ABC? I think Jonathon Holmes would be more than interested in your recording of the Skynews Agenda clip. I was so incensed when I read your piece, I almost rang Jon Faine's program but then thought I'd better check with you about what you are going to do about it: wouldn't want to spoil your thunder. (I've checked Fran Kelly's contact details and am ready to send an email to her program re this issue - it's not good enough that stuff like this is reported without checking the facts - Milne and Maiden aren't worth bothering about). So, bilgedigger, am awaiting your reply Cheers

lyn1

16/03/2010HI Ad [b]KERRY[/b] Here is the links to the video in question of Kritina Keneally and Kevin Rudd, of course well advertised on and talked about on Bolts page, also video from channel nine news. [b]NOTE KEVIN RUDE NEW NAME BY BOLT[/b] http://blogs.news.com.au/heraldsun/andrewbolt/index.php/heraldsun/comments/kevin_rude http://blogs.news.com.au/heraldsun/andrewbolt/index.php/heraldsun/comments/kevin_rude http://video.au.msn.com/watch/video/pm-gives-keneally-cold-shoulder/x0yisk3

lyn1

16/03/2010SORRY EVERYONE I AM HAVING TROUBLE WITH SOME LINKS THESE LAST 2 DAYS KERRY HERE IS BOLT AGAIN HIS LINKS WILL TAKE YOU TO THE CLIPS http://blogs.news.com.au/heraldsun/andrewbolt/index.php/heraldsun/comments/rudds_woman_problem/

HillbillySkeleton

16/03/2010Sir Ian Crisp, Your premise re: Howell Raines and the WashPo article is spurious, to say the least.

kerry

16/03/2010Thanks lyn1 - but I'm really none the wiser (couldnt get the audio to work)and could only view the msn video Do you think that clip was doctored? Cheers

lyn1

16/03/2010Hi Kerry Sorry about those 2 links, something is causing me grief other than this misconscrued reporting by the MSM. Go on this link to Bolts page and he has links everywhere to this distorted story http://blogs.news.com.au/heraldsun/andrewbolt/index.php/heraldsun/comments/rudds_woman_problem/ As for this video being doctored it is sure looking that way, did you read bilgedigger's comment today the very first comment on here.

HillbillySkeleton

16/03/2010There is nothing like sitting in the balmy Sydney Autumn sunshine for clearing one's head and allowing one to think creatively. It was thus today when I went out with a cup of tea and thought about what my response to this topic would be. How could I say something constructive &/or instructive? And then it did come to me, that blinding flash of insight, a different way of looking at matters, that may help others to solve the jigsaw puzzle that is the Coalition's continuing positive performance in the Opinion polls, and their dominance of the media, sadly including 'Our' ABC. Also, how that compares to the government's opposite fortunes, at the moment. Firstly, it is my belief, without any proof but just solely based on instinct, that the Coalition have mastered the symbiotic relationship between the ethos and practices of Web 2.0, and the traditional media, to get themselves all over the media like a rash, and to have the media singing from their song book. It is my contention that the Coalition have employed a virtual media production company, which has staff now engaged in script writing for the daily message, as well as the traditional function of developing the day's Talking Points; Voice Coaches, who prep the MPs on a daiily basis to deliver the script with the correct intonation etc., to get the desired effect on the listener. Also, they appear to have permanently-stationed 'Booking Officers' in each media organisation's offices, especially in Parliament House and the Press Gallery and associated studios. The function of these people is to organise the schedule for the day for the MP 'talent' to appear on the array of shows broadcasting, both on Free-to-Air, Pay TV and Radio. There is also an appearance of liason with 'The Parliamentary Doors' reporters, such that 1, 2, 3, and even, 4, Coalition mouthpieces can be sent out to deliver their 'lines', for the ever-hungry for content, camera and radio station crews waiting at 'The Doors'. For example, on today's Midday News on the ABC, I counted 4 Opposition spokespeople given the opportunity to have a verbal whack at the PM over the polls, not to mention 2 opportunities for Tony Abbott to put in his vindictive 2c-worth for the cameras. All for one story! The government had one spokesman. Not to mention the continued 'bootstrapping' of the Insulation story, complete with Greg Hunt comment, as a result of another 2 minor fires in roofs of suburban Melbourne homes overnight. No reply was broadcast from a government spokesperson. Although, I will admit, they may not have wanted to make one. Nevertheless, this ability by the Opposition to take a 'You Tube'-type attitude to their media appearnces, and craft a complete package for the media organisations to gobble up, appears to me to have left the government flat-footed in comparison. Thus, if I were the PM and the government, I would be getting the Party HQ to stump up some funds to employ a similar outfit to start playing the Opposition at their own game. I don't think it's a matter of either Web 2.0, or the Mainstream media; quite the contrary, now's the time to realise that you have to 'harmonise' the two to be successful. They could do worse than start by dragging in some old Ad men from past Labor administrations, such as Phillip Adams, John Singleton, Bryce Courtenay, Jane Caro, or even bleedin' Eddie Maguire, or Russel Crowe, plus variously-identified Young Guns, like Todd Sampson, to be on the payroll(maybe even Paul Keating if he would deign to do it!), and start them working on a plan to turn the tide. Otherwise they'll get bound up by Web 2.0 in a very sticky situation that is hard to break free from and survive.

Ad astra reply

16/03/2010bilgedigger We’d all like to see the full clip of the Kristina Kenneally/Kevin Rudd interaction, which you say was edited to show Rudd in a poor light. This is a deceptive practice that video and audio technology allows. I wonder how often this goes on. BH I don’t actually enjoy reading the disingenuous articles published by [i]The Australian[/i], but it is a rich source of material to critique. [i]The Oz[/i] never lets me down when I’m looking for examples of poor journalism. We should not forget though that some journalists writing there are exemplary. George Megalogenis, Jack the Insider and Paul Kelly are just three that spring to mind as journalists always worth reading. You wonder if we should be hammering the proprietors rather than the journalists. This piece hammers both. While accepting journalists need to earn a living to keep a roof over their heads, that they ostensibly subvert their editorial endeavours to the imperative of keeping the proprietor happy, and their jobs secure, points to the evil in a system where seemingly what Murdoch wants, Murdoch gets, or else. Lyn1 You really are a marvel. The blog sites you include add to the rich tapestry of your links. I know of no other links service that covers blogs. I expect you’re aware of [i]Breakfast Politics[/i] http://www.breakfastpolitics.com/ that covers standard news outlets, but I’ve not encountered any blog references. Yet for we political tragics these are where we derive so much insight. [i]Grog’s Gamut[/i] pieces are always informative; I enjoyed [i]Loon Ponds[/i] delightful satire today. Michael You point to another pernicious habit of journalists, inserting words in juxtaposition to what seems to be a quote so that the words appear to be part of the quote, or simply converting the perverted quote into a headline. It seems that some journalists have no shame at this misrepresentation so long as it enhances their headline or initial paragraphs, satisfies their ideological position, or simply pleases their editor/proprietor. Many would argue that if their articles are read completely the facts are there, but equally they know that it’s what’s in the headlines and the first couple of paragraphs that count when they want to influence public opinion. Most people read no further. Amos Keeto You were right in the first place. [i]The Australian’s[/i] Australian of the year’ award was no more than a front for the attack to come. BB The headlines about the [i]Newspoll[/i] results display for all to see the orientation of the writer. The most appropriate was Possum’s [i]Newspoll Tuesday – Groundhog Day Edition[/i], because that’s what it largely was. Although Labour lost a primary percentage point to the Greens, the TPP was the same as a fortnight earlier, the PPM was identical, Tony Abbott has slipped a point on approval, but within the MOE; the only statistically significant change was in Kevin Rudd’s approval/disapproval ratings that narrowed by four points, just above the MOE. So Dennis Shanahan would justify his headline [i]Kevin Rudd hits new low with voters: Newspoll[/i] by asserting that it was the only newsworthy item in the poll. He would have been disappointed that the other figures were not better for the Coalition; the one that was, the primary vote, he highlighted also. Dennis is relishing Rudd’s fall from stratospheric popularity. His other piece [i]Up close and personal for PM[/i] rubs it in with his opening paragraphs [i]” Kevin Rudd still has a personal problem with the voters and, at first blush, his taking the blame for mistakes and unveiling a new public hospital plan hasn't solved it. What's more, what is a personal problem with the Prime Minister's public approval is becoming an issue for his whole government.”[/i] http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/opinion/up-close-and-personal-for-pm/story-e6frg6zo-1225841126155 A less partisan headline would have been: [i]Newspoll largely unchanged, but Rudd’s ratings slip[/i], but that would never do for Dennis or [i]The Australian[/i]. Or perhaps [i]Rudd slips but Labour still in election-winning position[/i]. No, that wouldn’t do either. What about [i]Rudd still well ahead of Abbott as preferred PM, but Rudd’s popularity down[/i] Good heavens no! Or [i]Abbott making little headway despite Rudd’s insulation problems[/i]. That would never do. Perhaps [i]Rudd’s slip in popularity less than expected[/i]. The editor’s red pen would quickly strike that out. What about [i]Is Rudd’s popularity slump at an end?[/i] Unthinkable!!! If one can believe what Possum said on his blog today about private polling showing results closer to the [i]Essential Research Report[/i] result, I suppose we should let Dennis have his moment of enjoyment. It may not last. Kerry Welcome to [i]TPS[/i]. I too hope to see the unadulterated clip. Sir Ian Would you accept the award of Companion of the Order of The Political Sword?

Ad astra reply

16/03/2010Sir Ian The award 'Companion of the Order of The Political Sword' allows the use of the post-nominals 'COPS'. I hope you will accept such a suitable accolade.

Sir Ian Crisp

16/03/2010I graciously accept that award AA. COPS.

adelaidegirl

16/03/2010I saw the clip of PM and KK on Insiders - did anyone else see it? What it showed me was KK and PM sitting at a table, KK talking animatedly to PM about how pleased she was to have the opportunity to talk, PM shuffling papers, not making eye contact, not responding at all to KK's pleasantries. He then said they should get on with it. I supposes this went on for 15 to 30 seconds but the way it looked made it feel much longer to me. There may have been a warm welcome before this but, what I saw on another program on another day was KK saying "Welcome to Sydney" and PM saying words to the effect of, I've been here before you know. There may have been other warm moments - I don't know - and what I saw on Insiders was obviously an excerpt, but PM's demeanour did seem a little brittle and I, for one, was embarrassed and discomfited by what I saw. PM should be more careful because he knows how he'll be represented. Please correct me if I'm wrong. I'm worried about this government and it's lack of strong response to the media/opposition propaganda. Please explain.

Bushfire Bill

16/03/2010Just back from the supermarket and saw the print edition of the Daily Telegraph: [b]Rudd's Tampa Moment[/b] was the headline. It concerned the shipping (either potential or actual) of asylum seekers to Darwin. The article (which I read while waiting at the checkouts) had [i]no mention at all[/i] of the [i]MV Tampa[/i]. I can only assume that the word "Tampa" was used to pejoratively associate current asylum seeker policy with that of 2001.

lyn1

16/03/2010[b]HI AD [/b] The Political Sword is posted on Crikey's front page again, called Rupeert's war on Rudd Here it is : http://www.crikey.com.au/politics/

lyn1

16/03/2010HI AD A must read for everyone SO IT'S PR CONTENT. Pavey: So in terms of a ranking of PR driven content, out of ten papers, the OZ came smack-bang in the middle, with the Daily Telegraph bringing up the rear, and the best was the Herald so… http://www.crikey.com.au/2010/03/16/chris-mitchell-on-pervasive-pr-press-releases-and-paywalls/

Ad astra reply

16/03/2010Sir Ian Crisp, COPS Thank you for your gracious acceptance of the award of Companion of the Order of The Political Sword. We shall address you accordingly hereafter.

Ad astra reply

16/03/2010Lyn1 I’ve replied to your email. I couldn’t get the Bolt link to work no matter what I did, so I went to his blog-site found the ‘Kevin Rude’ piece and copied the URL: http://blogs.news.com.au/heraldsun/andrewbolt/index.php/heraldsun/comments/kevin_rude which seems to work. I’m not sure what happened to your link.

Ad astra reply

16/03/2010adelaidegirl I can understand anyone viewing the clip of the Kenneally/Rudd interaction that was shown on most TV outlets being disturbed by what looked like boorish behaviour. That impression is the result of the clip being clipped to exclude the preceding seconds. I haven’t seen the full clip, but bilgedigger say it places a different complexion on the episode. The dishonest habit of cutting and pasting audio or video clips is nothing short of scandalous if the intent is to misrepresent the situation, as would appear to be the case in this instance. We see something similar with the photos chosen to accompany written pieces. If the piece is putting a politician down, an unflattering photo is chosen that shows an open mouth, a grimace or any other unpleasant facial expression. These are dead easy to obtain – the media libraries are full of them, mostly taken during ordinary conversations, where all of us have ‘unfortunate’ and sometimes ‘ugly’ moments. bilgedigger If you could post the full clip of the Kenneally/Rudd interaction it would help us resolve this matter.

lyn1

16/03/2010Hi Ad Ad and Bilgedigger this is copy of a comment over on Pure Poison this person saw exactly what you saw on Sky News Keneally and Rudd clip. confessions Posted March 16, 2010 at 1:12 pm | Permalink I commented in another place last night that the clip showing Rudd supposedly being rude to Keneally is indeed a meme. On Sky Agenda last night they flashed to the clip in order to show footage of the ‘rudeness’ moment as a talking point for the panel. Only problem is they started it from too far back and we the audience saw the two laughing and having a good ole time. The ‘rudeness’ bit begins when the press conference starts and Rudd starts to focus on the documents in front of him while Keneally is talking. If anything Rudd is trying project seriousness, and it just looks a bit too forced, which is why the cherry-picked footage looks so odd. When you see the *entire* thing however, it is plainly obvious there’s no rudeness at all, just a studied concentration of Rudd as he tries to come over all serious for the cameras. Another anti Rudd beat up I’m afraid. Take a look http://blogs.crikey.com.au/purepoison/2010/03/16/is-that-a-meme-i-smell-cooking/#more-5426

CONAN

16/03/2010not much of undeclared war, dont even mention the asylum boat arrivals.

Ad astra reply

16/03/2010HillbillySkeleton Thank you for a most thoughtful appraisal of what’s probably going on in the Liberal PR camp. They seem better organized outside than inside parliament. Today’s QT was just awful, with several questions on boat people, (for which the PM was surprisingly well informed with voluminous documentation suggesting there may be a mole in Liberal ranks), several on the BER infrastructure, but few if any on health. The Dorothy Dixers gave Government ministers the opportunity to hammer Tony Abbott relentlessly, particularly about ‘ripping $1billion out of the health care system’ while he was minister, and Julia Gillard ripped into those who asked questions about ‘mismanagement’ of the schools building program. The Government outperformed the Coalition there by a country mile, but the Coalition seems to be getting the better exposure in the media. That is partly because of the media’s compliance, but probably as you say because they have engaged PR people to help them. The Government does need to lift its PR game in the media and ensure it gets better coverage. It has the resources and should act now. I’d be sure it has hundreds of negative clips ready for the official election campaign, but it needs to get positive messages out now about the many things it has achieved already to counter the ‘all talk, no action’, or ‘all hat, no cowboy’ slogans the Coalition now mouths endlessly. One big difference between the messages of the Coalition, particularly Abbott, and the Government, especially Rudd, is that the former often indulge in personal slights. The slogans use words like ‘Rudd’s a bully’, ‘Rudd’s rude’, ‘Rudd parades his religion’, ‘Rudd speaks bureaucratese’, ‘Rudd is a fraud and people are waking up', and so on. Although the Government attacks Abbott’s, Hockey’s and Joyce’s credentials, ridicules their economic nous, and throw back at them their past words and actions, the attacks are not of the same deeply personal nature. Rudd seems unprepared to retaliate in this way. The reference to ‘budgie snugglers’ is likely regarded by Abbott as somewhat of a compliment and a tribute to his manhood. Whether the Coalition tactics are responsible for the eroding of Rudd’s ratings or whether that is due to the malicious attacks in the media, or whether the insulation saga is responsible we shall probably never know. The next few polls should indicate which way public opinion is blowing; if [i]Essential Research[/i] this week and the private polling Possum mentioned are a guide, we may see a reversal of the downward trends for Rudd and Labor with him.

Sir Ian Crisp

16/03/2010Hillbillyskeleton, the ululations from Howell Raines trying to stir the troops into action overlook some pointed criticism of the Fox brand. The Huffington Post and its hacks are not in the Fox Fan Club and have said so on several occasions. It is a fact that Fox got kneed in the groin by the 2004 doco “Outfoxed”. It should be noted that fans of Fox believe it merely balances the ledger because of the perceived bias of CNN. Blogs like Daily Kos.com also help to balance the ledger. Howell Raines showed poor reasoning when he gave Jayson Blair a leg up because of his skin colour. Blair’s unprofessional work consisting of inaccuracies, inventions, confections, plagiarism, misquotes, and, fabrications finally proved too much and it was explained to him that resignation would look much better on his CV than the bullet. Journalists formed a queue with each journalist landing on Raines with both feet. They believe he mortally wounded journalism by failing to act sooner to dump Blair. Howell Raines might now be trying to get even with the fourth estate by asking: “Fox is destroying serious journalism so where are you guys?” It might be pointed out to Raines that he did a pretty good job of trying to destroy serious journalism himself. Would you buy a used car from Raines if he told you that it was only driven to and from church and even then only on sunny days and never in the rain? Raines talking about journalism would be akin to Keating give a talk on financial matters. COPS aka Sir Ian Crisp

Ad astra reply

16/03/2010BB They were on to boat people in QT today and the Darwin facility – must have been the theme of the day, which no doubt their PR people fed to [i]The Telegraph[/i]. As HillbillySkeleton says, the Coalition PR outfit is well organized. Lyn1 The interview of Chris Mitchell by Sasa Pavey makes fascinating reading. A must read for all who wonder how [i]The Oz[/i] goes about its work. The full Kenneally/Rudd interaction does paint a different picture. I see Rudd as wanting to get down to the nub of the health care issue – that’s why he went there. Thank you for alerting me to the fact that [i]TPS[/i] gets a mention on the Politics page of [i]Crikey[/i] with the headline [i]Rupert’s war on Rudd[/i]. It fits with [i]Crikey’s[/i] theme this week on [i]Spinning the media[/i].

Ad astra reply

16/03/2010Mark on [i]Lavartus Prodeo[/i] draws our attention to Bernard Keane’s piece on [i]Crikey[/i] today [i]The honeymoon is over at your ABC[/i] where he says [i]“The Australian as usual heavily spins a static Newspoll result in the Coalition’s favour, revealing last night only that the Prime Minister’s satisfaction rating had fallen, rather than the flat 2PP outcome or a fall in Tony Abbott’s satisfaction rating, or a rise in the Greens’ vote, or the continuing and stable gap between Rudd and Abbott over preferred PM (which back in the day used to be the Shanahanigan’s real indicator of political dominance). The ABC falls into line, with radio news bulletins this morning running with the fall in Rudd’s satisfaction levels and AM dragging out the “honeymoon is over” chestnut, bringing up the 1,000th time that phrase has been used since Rudd became leader. Meanwhile, on the cheap-as-chips Caralis Network, talkback host Leon Delaney gets it right when he notes that the Government retains a commanding lead. Can’t wait for the ABC to stretch its news resources even thinner with the 24 hour news channel.”[/i] http://www.crikey.com.au/2010/03/16/the-honeymoon-is-over-at-your-abc/

Ad astra reply

16/03/2010CONAN Welcome to [i]TPS[/i]. The boat arrivals got a good working over in QT today, and in [i]The Telegraph[/i]. Don't know what that's about all of a sudden.

bilgedigger

16/03/2010Thanks Ad Astra & others who have enquired about the "rude" Rudd shown on Skynews Agenda, I'll have a go at trying to get the Skynews clip posted here. Mine is on video cassette (we don't run to high priced technology in our household) so, having tested to the limit my technological skills in copying the cassette to another cassette for my friend, I'll try to get my head around how to proceed to get it to a point to be posted here. Any suggestions (step by step please) for how to go about this would be more than gratefully received (just don't mention the word "luddite"). The copy I did for my friend was for him to do some groundwork in preparing to participate (not sure whether on panel or audience) in the Debate on March 26th. The request from him was not specifically for any references to either O'Farrell or Keneally but so he could get some pointers from Skynews Agenda. It was grist for the mill that this happened to be a topic There is also a clip today on theage.com.au > National > latest video (Rudd courts State premiers) today which goes a bit further than what is being pushed in other media and it is clear that there is a cordial and friendly welcome. This is at about 47 sec. into the clip and goes for a few seconds, but sufficient to put a different slant on it before it cuts away to comments on the supposed rudeness. It is interesting also that the comment is made that the football crowd was booing Kevin Rudd (also mentioned by Dennis Atkins on Insiders) but from what I saw (briefly only I must admit) the booing could just as well have been for the tackle in the goal square. As an earlier poster commented on the previous post "Perception is everything in politics". We could have added that selective perception is also endemic, not only in politics but as well generally, and I don't exclude myself from this - except to say I trained as a psychologist so am constantly aware of my own biases and misperceptions (most of them anyway).

lyn1

16/03/2010[b]HI bilgedigger [/b] I did a search for you and found this youtube video, this guy talks you through showing exactly what you need and how to transfer vinyl records or video cassette to cd or dvd. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mq5CSJ7LzrU Once you get the cd done, maybe you can then post it on youtube and give us all a link

HillbillySkeleton

16/03/2010Hello biledigger, Pleased to make your acquaintance! :) It's always good to have further input to our conversation. I especially like your Sherlock work!

Ad astra reply

16/03/2010bilgedigger Good luck with the technology. I'm not able to add to what Lyn1 has suggested. It seems pretty obvious now that this is just another beat-up by one section of the media, slavishly and unthinkingly copied by others. Not just groupthink bur sloppy journalism. Whether this is due to staff shortages as Chris Mitchell of [i]The Oz[/i] suggests today on [i]Crikey[/i], or sheer laziness is debateable - it's probably both. But it's pernicious amd malevolent.

BH

16/03/2010[The Government does need to lift its PR game in the media and ensure it gets better coverage. It has the resources and should act now. I’d be sure it has hundreds of negative clips ready for the official election campaign, but it needs to get positive messages out now about the many things it has achieved already to counter the ‘all talk, no action’, or ‘all hat, no cowboy’ slogans the Coalition now mouths endlessly. ] AA - this is worrying me. The Oppn seems to be getting traction with its constant deningraton of the PM and he thinks it doesn't resonate. I'm sure if people hear every day that Rudd is a fraud, all talk and do nothing, a disappointment, etc. etc. they really do believe it. I think this Govt. is pretty hopeless at selling itself. The GFC was well sold but since then they have gone to sleep. I think being so far ahead in the polls for so long didn't do them any good. HillbillySkeleton is right - the Oppn has snuck in front with their media opportunities and Labor seems to leave almost everything unanswered. It is very frustrating.

lyn1

16/03/2010[b]NIGHT LINKS[/b] [u][b]http://grogsgamut.blogspot.com/[/b][/u] http://www.crikey.com.au/2010/03/16/mps-bowing-out-of-politics-at-election-2010-a-crikey-list/ http://anonymouslefty.wordpress.com/ http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2010/03/16/2847141.htm?WT.mc_id=newsmail http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/stories/s2846121.htm?WT.mc_id=newsmail http://www.domknight.com/the-puzzling-popularity-of-kevin-rudd/ http://loonpond.blogspot.com/2010/03/miranda-devine-q-and-no-need-for.html http://northcoastvoices.blogspot.com/ http://blogs.crikey.com.au/firstblog/2010/03/16/guest-post-iii-bolt-skepticism/ http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2010/03/16/2847135.htm?section=justin http://www.rightpulse.com/archives/1359

Ad astra reply

16/03/2010Lyn1 Great links - Grog's Gamut superb as usual. Dominic Knight very intersting too. Thank you.

lyn1

16/03/2010Hi Ad All the links worked this time, thankyou for your help Ad. I think I missed this one: http://blogs.crikey.com.au/purepoison/2010/03/16/is-that-a-meme-i-smell-cooking/#more-5426

lyn1

16/03/2010Hi Ad Please everybody please note the comments on this link http://blogs.crikey.com.au/purepoison/2010/03/16/is-that-a-meme-i-smell-cooking/#more-5426 confessions Posted March 16, 2010 at 4:56 pm | Permalink Ahh, I’ve remembered where I read it now. http://www.thepoliticalsword.com/post/2010/03/15/News-Limitede28099s-undeclared-war-on-the-Rudd-Government.aspx And I see from comments that others have noticed the Sky News video footage and the promise of a link to the Sky clip that they recorded. It is certainly looking as though the Rudd/Kenneally clip has been altered to show Rudd in a poor light, thus feeding the ‘rude’ meme. Shame on News ltd! 13 quantize Posted March 16, 2010 at 5:07 pm | Permalink This whole blabber about Rudd lacking authenticity and Abbott being a ‘real’ bloke has got to be the phoniest confected rage to have ever come out of the coalition and their News Ltd publicity wing. If a principaled ‘real’ politician leads a party which has an environmental policy for something he believes is ‘crap’, suddenly about-faces on paternity leave when it’s suddenly politically expedient, callously dismissed homelessness as a lifestyle ‘choice’ and would happily have foistered the toxic Work’choices’ on us, then i’ll happily take ‘fake’ or ‘phony’ any day thankyou. Is Rupert Inc intending to do it’s job any time soon you have to wonder?

Marilyn

17/03/2010It's amazing that suddenly the bolter and Akers are saying we have to turn around refugees again even though it is illegal, dangerous and utterly revolting.

Ad astra reply

17/03/2010Lyn1 It was gratifying to see the PB bloggers too had picked up on the flimsiness of the 'rude Rudd' meme. Those who want to see another take on the Kenneally/Rudd interaction should take a look at http://media.smh.com.au/national/national-news/rudd-courts-state-premiers-1222042.html If the main screen does not load that story immediately, click the small icon below the screen that shows Rudd and Kenneally with the caption [i]Rudd courts state premiers[/i]. There is also comment about the booing of Rudd at the rugby match, about which I could make neither head nor tail.

HillbillySkeleton

17/03/2010I wonder if the Bolthead and Attackerman will , with consistency, advocate we send the 'planes back from whence they came, with the other 90% of asylum seekers on board. And Piers might fly!

Ad astra reply

17/03/2010HillbillySkeleton I wonder what sector of the electorate takes Bolt and Akerman seriously. When we read their pieces, which I must say I largely avoid, it is to see what nonsense they are promulgating, but we know they get lots of readers. Bolt boasts one million hits a month. Apart from the curious, how many read them seeking to be converted to their point of view? We can never know the answer to that, but if one can judge from the comments, most of which support their viewpoints, those who read them are simply reinforcing their own well-established views. Of course we all tend to do that. I suspect that many of those who disagree with their viewpoints and say so online do so for amusement to see what reaction they evoke. Although I have no hard evidence to back my view, in my opinion Bolt’s and Akerman’s pieces would be unlikely to convert anyone – their extreme positions serve only to confirm readers’ pre-existing opinions – strongly for or against. So I don’t regard them as vote-changers.

Ad astra reply

17/03/2010Folks We can see which way Peter van Onselen is heading in his piece in today’s [i]Australian, PM on verge of becoming a drag on Labor vote[/i]. http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/opinion/pm-on-verge-of-becoming-a-drag-on-labor-vote/story-e6frg6zo-1225841584447 He has picked up on the latest meme that Julia Gillard is waiting to replace Kevin Rudd (some postulate even before the next election), because Rudd has become an electoral liability and because of his assertive management style. He uses satisfaction/dissatisfaction ratings to make his case. I couldn’t see any reference to the PPM ratings where Rudd is 25 points ahead of Abbott. I guess cherry picking evidence to make the case is established practice for lesser journalists. Expect to see more of this leadership speculation. It’s great sport for journalists, requires little research as supposition and scuttlebutt reign supreme, encourages whispering in the corridors off which journalists hungrily feed, and does nothing but distract politicians from their real task – governing the country. You’ll smile at his prediction: [i]”The government should win the next election, but the margin of victory won't be nearly as significant as it looked like being when Turnbull was leading a divided Coalition (assuming Abbott continues to hold his team together).” [/i] Sticking his head out so early? No. Note the caveat in brackets.

lyn1

17/03/2010[b]TODAY'S LINKS[/b] http://www.pipingshrike.com/2010/03/unravelling-tony-abbott.html http://guttertrash.wordpress.com/2010/03/17/coalition-crumbles-under-credibility-crisis/ http://www.menzieshouse.com.au/2010/03/costello-on-paid-maternity-leave.html http://loonpond.blogspot.com/2010/03/janet-albrechtsen-peter-costello.html http://theorstrahyun.blogspot.com/2010/03/two-believers-in-old-superstitions.html http://blogs.crikey.com.au/pollbludger/2010/03/17/educated-guesswork-2/ http://blogs.crikey.com.au/johnnys/2010/03/16/music-to-digest-newspoll-by/ http://www.crikey.com.au/2010/03/16/come-in-spinner-exclusive-shock-horror-probe-reveals-pr-influence/ http://www.crikey.com.au/2010/03/16/media-spin-and-crikey/ http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/stories/s2847591.htm http://www.crikey.com.au/2010/03/16/crikey-says-friends-or-foes-its-hard-to-tell-with-media-games/ http://blogs.crikey.com.au/pollbludger/2010/03/17/educated-guesswork-2/ http://mumble.com.au/ http://googlepublicpolicy.blogspot.com/2010/03/newspaper-economics-online-and-offline.html http://blogs.crikey.com.au/johnnys/2010/03/16/music-to-digest-newspoll-by/ http://www.smh.com.au/national/costello-slams-abbott-parent-tax-20100316-qclw.html http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/politics/abbotts-parental-leave-scheme-is-an-unfair-stinker-20100316-qbw0.html http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/politics/rudd-abbott-in-wacky-race-to-the-bottom-of-the-tax-barrel-20100316-qcgv.html http://www.2ue.com.au/blogs/2ue-blog/peter-costello-lashes-tony-abbott/20100317-qda9.html http://www.theage.com.au/national/costellos-big-swipe-at-abbott-20100316-qckw.html?autostart=1 http://www.theaustralian.com.au/politics/peter-costellos-attack-on-tony-abbotts-parental-leave-scheme-buoys-labor/story-e6frgczf-1225841704564 http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/opinion/pm-on-verge-of-becoming-a-drag-on-labor-vote/story-e6frg6zo-1225841584447

matthias

17/03/2010The Herald Sun has been relentless, the hot water systems was a classic & timed to blunt Rudd's progress on Health & covering over Abbott's new tax that even Andrew bolt couldn't stomach. The following day there was a follow up 2 page story on about page four highlighting more football teams (one who showers in a chook shed) who were recipients of this apparent largess which did mention that the original team was happy with their systems in one small paragraph half way through but unless you remembered the name of the team there was nothing to say it was the same team plastered on page 1 the day before, let alone a retraction. There has also been repeat stories with families of the victims of the insulation scheme & an article stating that "Peter Garrett has been demoted to approving prawn farms & opening arts festivals" while still drawing his massive ministerial salary, even though those are 2 things I would expect an arts & wildlife minister to actually do.

lyn1

17/03/2010Hi Ad Sorry Ad and everyone the " rel="nofollow">blogs.crikey.com.au/.../ is at it again, I have no way of telling this will happen until after I have posted the links. [b]Anyway just go to [/b] http://www.crikey.com.au/politics/ There is a lot of good reading.

Ad astra reply

17/03/2010Lyn1 I can't explain why the Crikey links mess up. I just copy what's in the address box on the page in question and drop it into the TPS comments box, and most of the time it works. Anyway the Crikey link works and visitors can go from there. An interesting set today with Costello's condemnation of Abbott's PPL, which should bring him back to the reality of politics just in case he was thinking it was all sweet smelling roses as the media has been encouraging him to believe. QT should be interesting today. Pity I'll miss it as I'll be on the road again. Back again this evening.

john Ryan

17/03/2010Howell Raines showed poor reasoning when he gave Jayson Blair a leg up because of his skin colour. Blair’s unprofessional work consisting of inaccuracies, inventions, confections, plagiarism, misquotes, and, fabrications finally proved too much and it was explained to him that resignation would look much better on his CV than the bullet. Journalists formed a queue with each journalist landing on Raines with both feet. They believe he mortally wounded journalism by failing to act sooner to dump Blair. Dear Sir Ian Crisp,what would you call the parade of lies, fiction and outright BS presented as fair and Balanced by Murdock's Faux News,if ever a media group deserves a get square NEWs is it,I hope Labour administer it,soon after they are relected

HillbillySkeleton

17/03/2010Ad Astra, This is a quote from Poll Bludger today. It exemplifies exactly the sort of demographic that Bolt & Akerman, et al., appeal to(and how the truth is meaningless to these people, no matter how many times you point it out to them): ' Had coffee with a couple of women vollies and phew, did I cop it. A sample of what hit me – exact words - “Rudd has sold us out to chinks, japs, arabs and anyone else he can get money from. Our culture is completely lost. Australians are too scared to stand up for themselves. Howard should come back. We don’t need any more immigration or refugees, full stop. We want our Australian way of life back. We are so far in debt that we’ll never get out of it. Barnaby Joyce is right and should be PM …. blah, blah, blah” I might add they liked the stimulus money they got and bragged about what they’d bought with it and admitted they’re kids and g/kids had jobs through the stimulus. There’s no point in arguing or trying to blind them with figures, or say that Howard increased immigration, didn’t spend enough on infrastructure, etc. They get all their info from the telly and talkback so they know everything they say is true!!! '

kerry

17/03/2010Just saw this on Jack The Insider's blog: maxoz Wed 17 Mar 10 (03:21pm) ref. rudd’s so called stony treatment of keneally and ian’s comment; the whole thing was a complete beat-up. if you view the whole news clip (available on youtube) and not the selectively cut one, you can see the pair laughing about a joke or something before rudd obviously says.........and now let’s get down to business. Looks like you were successful bilgedigger, or did someone else beat you to youtube? Cheers

lyn1

17/03/2010Hi Kerry Thankyou for letting us know about the video Kerry, I would love to know what the video was called though, so we could seach for it.

bilgedigger

17/03/2010lyn1 - You are a genius! Thanks for the information. I'll have a go at the weekend (I see it's a 6-7 min. clip) when I'm more free than during the week. It's great to see others have also seen the clip on YouTube (not mine by the way) and in the repeat of SkyNews Agenda that same night (thanks again to lyn1 for the link to Crikey and the comment by Confessions). It is important that things like this get called for what they are and which in effect is a manipulation of the right to vote for anyone you want to, which I think used to be called by the quaint name "democracy". As to the other comments on the theme of the day, or week, which gets picked up and repeated over and over by the cheersquads (on all sides) I'm very tired (and angry) about being thought stupid by the practitioners peddling this sludge.

Sir Ian Crisp

17/03/2010John Ryan, surely you aren’t advocating that Australia should be a Stalinist country. Freedom of the press is sacrosanct. Sure, a lot of tosh makes it into print but all sections of the media dabble in perfidious behavior. The next time you spot our Dear Leader take a look at his shoulders. His shoulders are broad and able to withstand criticism. Copping the bouquets and brickbats goes with the territory of those who seek public office. A big burly union man like yourself should be able to sort the chaff from the wheat. If in doubt just follow AA's advice regarding reading material. I read nothing other than ALP press releases and books authored by retired ALP luminaries. I don't get invited to many parties and when I do attend a party I'm usually involved in a heated debate within 5 minutes of my arrival. The debate revolves around the fact that not many people (none in fact) are prepared to accept the fact that G*d, Bob Hawke, and Paul Keating are the only individuals to walk on water. G*d did get a helping hand from The Father but in the case of Hawke and Keating it was pure unassisted genius.

lyn1

17/03/2010Hi Bilgedigger A pleasure to be of some help to my friends here at Ad Astra's blogg, thankyou for your kind compliments. Hope it works for you, if so then you can put any old VHS cassettes onto DVD or CD. I have worked quite long and hard, 12 hundred songs actually, converting my old audio CD'S from CDA file format to MP3 format, thus allowing me to fit 180 songs on one CD. Did you notice that Confessions had left a comment about your observation on the Sky Video on another blogg. This kind of reporting does make me angry, we are helping though by paying more attention to detail. The Political Sword is getting recognised more and more everyday, with Ad and Bushfire Bill writing up such brilliant columns, the number of new commenters increasing daily posting excellent quality comments. We can all try, word travels fast. [b]WE ARE NOT STUPID[/b]

lyn1

17/03/2010[b]NIGHT LINKS [/b] [b]GROG'S REPORT ON QUESTION TIME TODAY EXCELLENT[/b] http://grogsgamut.blogspot.com/ http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2010/03/17/2848435.htm http://larvatusprodeo.net/2010/03/17/costello-piles-on/ http://www.pipingshrike.com/2010/03/unravelling-tony-abbott.html http://ozcentral.blogspot.com/2010/03/john-howard-tips-authentic-tony-abbott.html [b]DON'T FORGET SPINNING THE MEDIA[/b] http://www.crikey.com.au/

Grog

17/03/2010Just to let everyone know - I don't pay lyn1 for the nice things she says of my blog! :-)

Ad astra reply

17/03/2010Lyn1 [i]Grog's Gamut[/i] is now essential reading to get the low down on QT. Thanks for including that link. [i]Crickey's[/i] piece is revealing.

Grog

17/03/2010[if you view the whole news clip (available on youtube) ] Would love to see it - haven't been able to find it on youtube though.

HillbillySkeleton

17/03/2010AA, Kezza, wed@4.13pm, on Jack the Insider's blog, mentioned the doctored footage of Rudd and Kenneally again. You know what? I reckon we should make it our motto(sorry, Don Chipp), to 'Keep the (Media) Bastards Honest' this election year. We seem to have had a relatively decent amount of success in this instance.

Bushfire Bill

18/03/2010God give me strength! Miranda Devine writes: [i]In front of photographers and TV cameras recording a meeting about health reform with the Premier, Rudd was bizarrely rude. As Kristina Keneally, [b]a civil and attractive woman still on her training wheels[/b], tried to engage him in polite routine conversation for the benefit of the whirring cameras, Rudd pointedly ignored her. He did not meet her gaze or acknowledge her courtesies, but busied himself fussing with the ring binders and folders on the desk in front of him, pursing his lips,[b] even as her voice faltered and grew less certain, and her eyes implored him to look up.[/b] Keneally may be the head of a broken-down government but she is personally popular and [b]voters have continued to warm to her engaging personality and plucky style[/b]. Treating any woman with such withering contempt would be bad manners but [b]treating a woman as well-liked and unthreatening as Keneally was beyond the pale[/b]. Anyone who watched the performance would have heard the same sound of pennies dropping as there was with the infamous election eve image of [b]Mark Latham trying to stand over the smaller, older John Howard[/b] with a power handshake in 2004.[/i] http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/politics/abbotts-sledging-of-rudd-cuts-through-finer-points-of-debate-20100317-qfkv.html Keneally was the Wicked Witch of Macquarie St. a week or so ago, a helpless puppet of the Evil Right of NSW Labor... and now she's St. Joan.

Bushfire Bill

18/03/2010More of the drivel here, from The Goanna (The Age): [i][b]But Abbott's constant controversy throughout his career is to be expected, that's just Tony. But Rudd has the straight laced character that means that he can't get away with this kind of public outburst nearly as often[/b]. I mean we're not actually worried about the rudeness itself. With Keneally for example, we're not worried that she had hurt feelings although she maintains that she has no hard feelings from the incident. But from one small incident of coldness, voters glean something more. The infamous Latham handshake with Howard back during the 2004 election campaign, voters understood Latham's over-charged aggression. From Rudd's cold shoulder to Keneally, we get a sense that he thinks a bit too highly of himself and his plan to even pretend to listen to others in front of the camera; an impatient right-to-rule attitude. And if it's one thing Australians cannot abide its when people think they are better than others with delusions of grandeur. Rudd is no Kanye but it seems the more we peek behind the curtain the less we like.[/i] http://www.theage.com.au/opinion/politics/is-rudds-rudeness-the-tip-of-the-iceberg-20100317-qdjp.html So there we have it: there really [i]is[/i] one rule for Tony Abbott and another rule for Rudd. We an see Abbott slag off Bernie Banton and stand up Nicola Roxon (and the National Press Gallery) on the same day. We can see him call Climate Change science "absolute crap", and tell us that Julia Gillard has a "shit-eating grin" on her face. He can call Kevin Rudd "a toxic bore" and lecture Australian women on the morality of virginity. But all we need is a "peek behind the curtains" and we can see the "tip of the iceberg bubbling to the surface". That's why "we" - who is "we"? - like Rudd less and less. I guess the theory is that while Abbott is up front rude and obnoxious, Rudd tries to pretend he isn't. Devine in her article opines that "the bigger they are they harder they fall" rule applies to Rudd. It is so easy for love to turn to hate. She even quotes Shakespeare in support! Presumably it is also possible for hate to easily turn to love. Tony... "we" loves ya!

Rx

18/03/2010The Opposition's dedication to getting their mantras and talking points across all conceivable forms of media 24/7 indicates their lack of commitment to their 'proper' job as a political party: developing policies. Any time they do come up with 'policies', they get slammed for them. Their Great Big Con Job on climate change was not received positively by the media at large (despite the party's cosy relationship with the media). And Abbott's Great Big New Tax parental leave was met with almost universal hostility. Policy is obviously too risky an enterprise for this vacuous excuse for a political party. Spinning a tidal wave of negativity about 'the other side' is their prevailing preoccupation. How shallow. How unworthy of being elected. In acknowledging that, it is time for the government to fight fire with fire, as Hillbilly Skeleton said above. Get some hot-shot media and PR people on the payroll and start getting out the LABOR message. Time to get bloody serious! Some opinion pieces I've read over the past couple of years suggest that Kevin Rudd takes the approach of 'not being political'. By that, I mean, setting himself as a contrast to Howard, who waged politics relentlessly. The theory goes that people were fatigued by Howard being in non-stop campaign mode, so Rudd took the decision to do things differently. Hence the absence of aggressively seeking media attention, the absence of hard-hitting attacks against his Opponents. Taking the 'politics' out of Labor's public face. Well, it's alright to try something new. In fact, it's commendable when based on considered theory. But when having tried a new approach you find it doesn't work, or you're being outgunned by your opponents, then it's time to form and move to Plan B. It is now a matter of urgency that Labor moves to their Plan B. A super-aggressive media and PR strategy, to counter the undoubtedly calculated Opposition strategy. We need the Labor message to be made as all-pervasive as that of the bad guys; in fact we need it to be MORE pervasive! You won't win a PR campaign unless you're in there in the thick of it. Hillbilly has given some first-class advice, which I've taken the liberty of reproducing here: [b]"They could do worse than start by dragging in some old Ad men from past Labor administrations, such as Phillip Adams, John Singleton, Bryce Courtenay, Jane Caro, or even bleedin' Eddie Maguire, or Russel Crowe, plus variously-identified Young Guns, like Todd Sampson, to be on the payroll(maybe even Paul Keating if he would deign to do it!), and start them working on a plan to turn the tide."[/b] Now we've just got to make the government aware of what they need to do!

Ad astra reply

18/03/2010Grog Others may be able to give you the YouTube clip of the Kenneally/Rudd interaction, but another take on it is at http://media.smh.com.au/national/national-news/rudd-courts-state-premiers-1222042.html If the main screen does not load that story immediately, click the small icon below the screen that shows Rudd and Kenneally with the caption [i]Rudd courts state premiers[/i]. There is also comment about the booing of Rudd at the rugby match, which I can’t work out.

Rx

18/03/2010I recommend readers peruse an insightful post made by commenter 'Bassman' at the 'Jack the Insider' blog. It dovetails right into what we're talking about here. Bassman explains how the Coalition get their talking points into the public vernacular by a strategy of relentless repetition and hammering home the mantras till the public are manipulated into learning them by rote. I won't reproduce it here for reasons of copyright, but please follow the link and look for his post of [b]Wed 17 Mar 10 (05:38pm)[/b] beginning with the words, [b]"How dare the Libs talk about Labor wasting money..."[/b] http://blogs.theaustralian.news.com.au/jacktheinsider/index.php/theaustralian/comments/the_old_boys_network/P75/

Ad astra reply

18/03/2010BB Clearly the vitriolic anti-Rudd campaign is in full swing, and will probably intensify when Abbott starts to falter, as he has over his PPL policy. The more he slips, the harder they will punch. Being anti-Rudd comes naturally to Miranda Devine. Today’s Goanna is Bella Counihan who is unknown to me. Google indicates she is from Canberra, writes for [i]National Times, The Age, The Brisbane Times[/i]. Judging from her past pieces on Rudd, she is not fan of him. So it’s easy for her to pen poison pieces. I agree with HillBillySkeleton and Rx that it’s high time Rudd and his ministers hit back hard. It’s no longer suitable to be the nice guy. The media and Abbott are engaged on a vicious assault on Rudd and it’s Government – it’s time for the ‘Empire to strike back’. Maybe we can be part of that process here at [i]The Political Sword[/i].

lyn1

18/03/2010[b]TODAY'S LINKS[/b] http://larvatusprodeo.net/ http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2010/03/17/2848435.htm?site=thedrum http://mumble.com.au/ http://www.nationaltimes.com.au/opinion/politics/is-rudds-rudeness-the-tip-of-the-iceberg-20100317-qdjp.html http://www.domknight.com/will-senator-steve-put-young-voters-first/ http://australianconservative.com/2010/03/another-biased-adventure/ http://loonpond.blogspot.com/2010/03/miranda-devine-and-bizarre-truth-about.html http://www.nationaltimes.com.au/opinion/politics/abbott-dodges-pies-from-former-allies-and-foes-20100317-qfq9.html http://www.nationaltimes.com.au/opinion/editorial/what-does-abbott-really-want-20100317-qfih.html http://www.nationaltimes.com.au/opinion/politics/abbotts-sledging-of-rudd-cuts-through-finer-points-of-debate-20100317-qfkv.html http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/stories/s2848717.htm http://www.getup.org.au/campaign/DontLetThemStopYouFromVoting&id=966 http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2010/03/18/2849069.htm http://207.57.117.110/blogs/qed/2010/02/john-howard-and-the-media/page:printable

john Ryan

18/03/2010Dear Sir Ian Crisp,i actually read quite widely, and I do not suggest that OZ should become a Stalinist Country,but give Murdock an inch and he will turn the Australian Media into Murdockstan, where you will only get News approved as printable by which ever satrap he has in the editors chair. The man Murdock censors NEWs into China and anywhere else he wants to broadcast into,his papers pry into any ones personal life bar Murdocks,hes a no go zone for the so called fearless reporters at NEWs,I hope Rudd wins and screws this prick and his papers and pay TV into the ground.

lyn1

18/03/2010[u][b]TODAY'S LINKS PART 2 [/b][/u] http://www.echonews.com.au/story/2010/03/18/read-my-lips-no-more-big-taxes-except-for-this-one/ http://blogs.crikey.com.au/pollytics/ http://blogs.crikey.com.au/purepoison/2010/03/18/dont-be-smug/#more-5442 http://www.onlineopinion.com.au/view.asp?article=10179

lyn1

18/03/2010[b]BREAKING NEWS[/b] Hi Ad and everybody [u][b]Kevin Rudd halts QT to ambush Tony Abbott on health [/b][/u] http://www.theaustralian.com.au/politics/kevin-rudd-halts-qt-to-ambush-tony-abbott-on-health/story-e6frgczf-1225842383418 http://news.smh.com.au/breaking-news-national/govt-puts-abbott-on-the-spot-on-health-20100318-qhl6.html

You must be kidding

18/03/2010Crumbs this Murdoch bloke is busy. Writing beatups to give to his journos to bash the very pure PM. Mind you there are some minor events which seem to give Murdoch his copy ... things like boorish bahaviour; boats arriving; yet another roof fire; school libraries costing more than toilet blocks; none of the premiers supporting the health idea; the NBN report not being released; the Henry Report not being released; $50,000,000,000+ government debt and counting ... where does he get the time and imagination to make this stuff up. Hasn't he heard that the buck stops with the PM; that the PM has apologised ... for his failings and indeed everything else, surely now Murdoch should give the guy a fair go. He should know Sorry is such a powerful word in the Australian context when deleivered by the PM so often ... surely Murdoch knows that. Yep I suspect it's the evil media that is making all of this stuff up and it has bloggers every where going nuts ... what did a wise person on this blog once say ... politics is all about the manipulation of perceptions and has nothing to do with reality ... the interesting aspect to current reporting in Fairfax, ABC and Murdoch media is that they are reporting reality and its beginning to change perceptions. As I predicted some time ago and will do so again ... October 16th election; Rudd wins and the LAbor Party has a new leader within two years.

john Ryan

18/03/2010Another regurgitated load from YMBK,try reading something else other that the crap the Liberal party feeds you mate,you might (but I doubt it) learn something

Ad astra reply

18/03/2010Lyn1 Thanks for the links to the Abbott ambush story, which I saw in QT. The tactic to give him ten, then fifteen minutes to talk on health surprised him, but he filled the time with a very loud denunciation of Rudd and his hospitals and health reforms, harking back to Rudd’s days as a bureaucrat in the Queensland government where he was called Dr Death. He kept up the mantra that if Rudd can’t run an insulation program how could he run a health care system. He aimed plenty of abuse at him. But he gave Rudd what I suspect he wanted, that he opposed most of the Rudd reforms. Rudd’s reply similarly castigated Abbott for his ‘ripping out $1 billion out of health budget’, accused him of being a weather vane that waved in the breeze, condemned him for his lack of action in health reform over his period as health minister, and at the end of QT offered Abbott a debate at the National Press Club next Tuesday, whuich Abbott accepted. That will show not just their debating skills, but the extent to which Abbott has articulated a health and hospitals reform plan of his own that is capable of matching Rudd’s. The pieces to which you gave us links were a reasonably balanced account of the afternoon’s event. What will be fascinating is the take on that event by the political commentators. I wonder what Dennis Shanahan will say?

Ad astra reply

18/03/2010YMbK Instead of commenting on the examples I’ve quoted of what I believe are media beat-ups, you revert to repeating the well-worn list of Rudd’s misdemeanours: boats arriving, roof fires, BER over-runs almost all of which have already been debunked, the NBN and Henry report still not released, and Government debt, all of which I expect you believe exonerates the media – after all Rudd and his Government deserve all the castigation the media metes out. You say none of the premiers support the hospitals reforms which you must know is untrue; the SA and Tasmania premiers have publically supported the reforms, the Queensland premier is seeking more information but is not opposing, the NSW premier likewise. The WA premier is cautious but not knocking the plan; the Victorian premier is the one playing hardball. You will have more credibility with readers here if you stick accurately to the facts. Leave the exaggeration to the Opposition and the media sycophants. You are also picking up on the latest meme – Rudd’s ‘boorish behaviour’, which is one of the most flagrant beat-ups the media and the Opposition has perpetrated in recent times. You have added that to the boilerplate you have on file that can be trotted out whenever the occasion demands. You imply that Rudd saying sorry is just an insincere act to expiate Rudd’s sins. I know it’s Abbott’s prerogative to repent and get his absolution, but obviously not Rudd’s You conclude Murdoch is simply reporting reality. Murdoch’s reality, your reality, but not everyone’s reality. Well good on old Rupert – from what you say, I can see my criticism was over the top.

lyn1

18/03/2010[b]NIGHT LINKS[/b] http://larvatusprodeo.net/ http://blogs.crikey.com.au/purepoison/2010/03/18/dont-you-be-smug-either/#more-5445 http://blogs.crikey.com.au/thestump/2010/03/18/back-to-2007-will-abbott-be-late-again/ http://www.theaustralian.com.au/politics/rudd-and-abbott-in-showdown-on-health-at-national-press-club/story-e6frgczf-1225842489628 http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2010/03/18/2849832.htm http://newmatilda.com/2010/03/18/abbott-really-catching http://www.onlineopinion.com.au/view.asp?article=10179

You must be kidding

18/03/2010AA Thanks for your feedback ... boorish was used by you actually. Sorry perhaps I should just ignore what you say. John You are a champion mate ... love your work ... boorish but love it. As to the themes of my piece ... hmmm I suspect they are in every question time, every news forum and every Murdoch paper ... it seems they are not mine but the topic of the day.

lyn1

18/03/2010Hi AD On the links about Parliament today and the forthcomming debate, you would have noticed the difference in reporting, the ABC link in particular. How can Tony Abbott appear in a staged debate about health and hospitals when he doesn't have a policy. I guess 4 days is enough time for Tone to prepare one. Isn't Tony Abbott supposed to be training for a triathlon on the 28th. I watched Parliament Question time too, but I went to Punch Paliament live, just to see what others were saying, Tony Abbott lost it then, he began yelling and screaming abuse at Kevin Rudd, nobody on Punch were very impressed with Abbotts performance. I proved to myself how impossible it is to join in conversation and watch too, which brings me to Liberal front benchers tweeting in question time, apparently Joe Hockey tweeted, that was the worst Parliament Question time, Oh right! they had 4 of their back benchers thrown out. None of the points of order from the opposition made sense. Julie Bishop highly offended. Looks like from what Mr Speaker said about the photo of the sleeping MP, there will be debate over the use of phones in the house.

Ad astra reply

18/03/2010Lyn1 Nice links. The only one that accurately recorded the key phrase Rudd was seeking was [i]ABC News[/i], which said: [i]”Mr Abbott took no time to declare he [b]‘questioned all of the policy and opposed most of it’.[/b]”[/i] Good to see at least one outlet got it right. That will be the starting point for the debate next Tuesday.

lyn1

18/03/2010[u][b]EXTRA EXTRA READ ALL ABOUT IT[/b][/ [b]DON'T MISS IT[/b] [u][b]GROG ON QUESTION TIME TODAY - BRILLIANT, BRIGHT SHINING LIGHT, GREAT BIG THANKYOU GROG[/b][/u] http://grogsgamut.blogspot.com/

Ad astra reply

18/03/2010Lyn1 Agree. Grog's Gamut was great.

john Ryan

19/03/2010Think you have a spammer BB

HillbillySkeleton

19/03/2010Gee, spammer Marcellus Fleavel didn't even bother to insert a trite comment!

HillbillySkeleton

19/03/2010Sorry, Feavel. :) No 'Preview' button gets me all the time. Especially with short comments.

Ad astra reply

19/03/2010john Ryan, HillbillySkeleton Yes, we have many irritating spammers. They are endemic; this morning they are in epidemic proportions. Some come in during the day and I kill them, but more come in overnight, probably from overseas, so they don't get deleted until morning. I've investigated how I might avoid them but the off-the-shelf blog engine I'm using does not allow the addition of anti-spam software. So all I can do is vigilantly delete the spam and apologize for those that slip thorough when I'm not at my computer.

lyn1

19/03/2010Hi Ad I just noticed by accident the spammers are hitting the archives, there is at least 20 on the last post. Sorry these awful insects are doing this to you Ad.

HillbillySkeleton

19/03/2010lyn1, you amazing newshound and essential cog in the TPS wheel(yes, I know, swords don't have wheels ;) )...I was wondering if you saw Tony Abbott and Julia Gillard on the Today Show this morning, and if you could provide a link to their sparring session? I imagine 'The Great Health and Hospitals Debate' was covered and commented on. I was too busy getting the kids off to school and couldn't flick the TV away from ABC2 Breakfast at the right time. I prefer to watch ABC2 to keep an eye on them(Joe and Virginia), in the morning ;) , also they have more substantial political debates than the mostly fluff-filled Sunrise and Today shows. I also listen to News Radio(yes, I'm a political tragic, sigh), and they had an interview this morning between Marius Benson and Peter Dutton, Shadow Health Minister. All I can say is that if Tony Abbott employs the same attack dog talking points that Dutton was wheeling out for consumption this morning, then it's going to be a very lopsided debate indeed. Essentially, the Coalition and Abbott will be running the already tired trope that, 'If you can't implement a 'Free' 'Giveaway' Pink Batt scheme, how can you be trusted to implement the Health and Hospitals Reform Plan?' May I just make the observation here that the Pink Batt scheme has not been unsuccessfully implemented. There have instead been teething problems which have been addressed. Also, over 1 million homes have received the Insulation, and it's only the Coalition's beloved Tradies, and Subbies that have dropped the ball. All the problems that have come up have been addressed. Metal staples: banned. Foil Insulation: removed. Installation over downlights in the ceiling: undergoing checking by auditors. Might I add though, that if I were Greg Combet I would be identifying all homes with downlights for inspection. Not that you'd realise that this was the case from the Coalition commentary. You'd think that the government had abandoned all Australians with Insulation installations to their fate. The other meme from Dutton was that tired old Conservative workhorse: 'Why is the PM proposing a new bureaurocracy?' When the words from the PM's own mouth in his initial speech outlining his plans pointed to his desire to not have one extra bureaurocrat in Health, and to relocate those that are there already out of the centralised Health bureaurocracies to the new Local Area Networks that his plan will create. Demonising Public Servants and bureaurocracies is such a well-worn redoubt of the Conservatives, I'm surprised anyone still gives it credibility when they wheel it out, and especially journalists, who never point out the massive expansion in the burearocracy under Howard, especially to implement his draconian anti-union and anti-worker agendas. Other lines from Dutton were: * 'Tony Abbott was frustrated during his 5 years as Health Minister and the States spent the money unwisely.' Convenient 'out' line from Dutton there, on behalf of Tony Abbott's perceived failings during his time as Health Minister. * The Labor Party has 'done nothing in 2 years'. '36 GP Super Clinics promised, only 2 delivered'. Ergo, echoing what appears to be a line the Coalition will take to the election: 'Over-promising, and under-delivering'. Hmmm, that should be able to be easily knocked out of the park by the government when they laboriously list all that they HAVE achieved in only 1 term, plus the government will be able to get together a list, I would hope, of the Howard government's 'Core & Non-Core' promises. Also, wrt to the '36 GP Super Clinics, only 2 delivered', from memory, Nicola Roxon has stated that the GP Super Clinic program is a 10 year one that will see those clinics delivered within the time frame she has specified repeatedly. That Dutton and Abbott wish to misconstrue this point should, you would hope, be able to be debunked by the PM during the debate. Actually, it was a very smart move by the government to bring this debate on now. They have given the Coalition all weekend to run around giving them leads on what their talking points will be for the debate, and if there's one thing I do know, Jane Halton Departmental Secretary for Health and former Howard government 'Children Overboard' panel Chair and Chief Strategist, and Nicola Roxon, former High Court intern to Justice Mary Gaudron, will relish the opportunity to do over the Opposition and provide the PM with lines of attack. I imagine the PM will also be looking forward to showing Australia that he is indeed a substantial political figure, and not the 'All Hat, No Cowboy' pastiche that Abbott seeks to portray him as.

Ad astra reply

19/03/2010Lyn1 Thanks, I thought I'd closed comments on that post. I have now, and have deleted the spam.

lyn1

19/03/2010Hi AD Glad you killed those rotten insects. Hillbilly Skeleton the video of Gillard and Abbott is not up yet, I will post it for you as soon as I can. I am like you ,I hardly ever watch the commercial channels, ABC breakfast and Sky Agenda is mostly where I stay. What excellent pieces you post on here, I enjoy your opinion very much, thankyou Hillbilly. Peter Dutton is one of the most miserable cranky shaddows on the Liberals front bench. This line Abbott has adopted makes me annoyed 'All Hat, No Cowboy' it's not Aussie, the media make a song and dance over "fair shake of the sauce bottle", nothing about the cowboy eh! I'm a political tragic, sigh, Hillbilly you are not the only one trust me. What is it, 7 weeks until Parliament sits again just wait and see there will be more stunts by Abbott, the government gave him plenty of rope yesterday to hang himself, we won't have to wait long. With regards to the insulation beat up, when is somebody, anybody, going to say, surely some responsibilty has to be taken by the home owners. We have had the pink batts installed and had them checked months ago, not a problem. Nobody from the Government made us have them installed we did all by ourselves. .

lyn1

19/03/2010Hi Ad Hillbilly here is the today show http://today.ninemsn.com.au/videoindex.aspx

lyn1

19/03/2010[b]TODAY'S LINKS[/b] http://politicalowl.blogspot.com/ http://mumble.com.au/ http://blogs.crikey.com.au/pollytics/ http://blogs.crikey.com.au/pollbludger/ http://blogs.crikey.com.au/electioncentral/2010/03/19/the-pundits-predict-tomorrows-polls/ http://theorstrahyun.blogspot.com/ http://www.pipingshrike.com/ http://www.nationaltimes.com.au/opinion/politics/snooze-scandal-stirs-slipper-to-demand-snap-judgment-20100318-qicy.html http://www.nationaltimes.com.au/opinion/politics/if-only-canberras-anger-could-generate-electricity-20100318-qifs.html http://catallaxyfiles.com/2010/03/19/health-inflation/ http://www.crikey.com.au/2010/03/19/the-school-yard-antics-of-qt-bullies-nerds-and-teachers/ http://port-macquarie.info/port-macquarie-prepares-for-ironman http://loonpond.blogspot.com/ http://www.businessspectator.com.au/bs.nsf/Article/Media-critics-in-a-spin-pd20100318-3MVR3?OpenDocument&src=kgb

Michael

19/03/2010Well, Dennis Shanahan excelled himself today. I could only respond with the following (since published on-line by The Oz to give them their due): Saint Tony, of course, always acts and speaks with perfect decorum in Parliament. The Coalition have been playing the man with insults to Kevin Rudd since well before the 2007 election. They have no policies, they have no clear manifesto except to be in government and wait for a messiah to show them the easiest way to stay there. The level of vitriol and dirty innuendo that the members of the Coalition throw at and insinuate about Kevin Rudd is quite disgusting. He beat them in 2007, they hate him for it. And that is the full nature of Coalition 'opposition' to Labor in government - get Kevin.

HillbillySkeleton

19/03/2010lyn1, You are a gem!

lyn1

19/03/2010Hi Ad It's a pleasure Hillbilly, I watched the video, Julia Gillard handled herself well but Abbott was stooping very low. Dennis is at it still, only in a frenzy today. The whole column is pitiful This is in MSM by a political reporter after yesterday, Tony Abbott's pugilistic, name calling, abusive performance in question time also numerous times before, I find the whole column just inconceivable, (the personal attacks on Abbott are proving that Kevin Rudd is in panic and desperation). Must be right because Dennis said so. Michael you have said it all couldn't agree with you more. your words: (The level of vitriol and dirty innuendo that the members of the Coalition throw at and insinuate about Kevin Rudd is quite disgusting). Spooked Government gets down and dirty ( nice twisted up topic name) http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/opinion/spooked-government-gets-down-and-dirty/story-e6frg6zo-1225842543780

Ad astra reply

19/03/2010Lyn1 Great links. The one that intrigued me most was the one to Dennis Shanahan’s [i] Spooked government gets down and dirty[/i] into today’s [i]Oz[/i]. I predicted he would write how Abbott had slaughtered Rudd in QT yesterday, and in doing so exhilarated his backbench. But no, his theme today is related but different. Perhaps tomorrow he’ll give us the ‘Abbott wins’ story. Michael, I’m with you about today’s piece. Today his meme is one that we will see from Shanas over and again – the Government is rattled; Rudd does not react well to pressure; Rudd panics too easily; Rudd is too poll driven:; the Rudd Government is spooked and so on. Count how many times he repeats these mantras in the time ahead. But his headline says more than that. He’s highlighting that the Government has got ‘down and dirty’. Well I say, about time. It’s amusing to see Dennis castigating Rudd for this when his man has been ‘down and dirty’ from the day he took over leadership, in fact well before that. Tony Abbott has set the tone (they call him Tone) – you shouldn’t feel too aggrieved Dennis if Rudd matches him. Another conclusion can be reached about our Dennis; he has decided that having seen off Malcolm Turnbull, against whom he ran a concerted latter-day campaign until he was gone, he has thrown his weight solidly behind Tony Abbott as the Liberals only hope this time around. No more pretending to be even-handed in his critique of the political situation – he’s going for broke for Abbott. So we’ll be taking his writings from now on with a grain of the proverbial political salt.

HillbillySkeleton

19/03/2010Ad Astra, That's not 'down and dirty', that's just 'effective Opposition'. ;)

HillbillySkeleton

19/03/2010lyn1, I especially liked Julia's retort to Abbott, when he butted in on her answering a question(why don't the spineless hosts on the Today Show stop that rude and crude man?): TA: "That's a lie, Julia" JG: "Just because you say it, Tony, doesn't make it so."

Ostermann

19/03/2010Hi All Heres a nice little post to put friday smile on our faces http://www.vexnews.com/news/8664/oh-dear-expensive-glenn-milne-sacked-by-news-ltd/ lyn1 love your work mate

Colen

19/03/2010Hi AA, What about Labors dirty tricks campaign against the Greens in Tassie. Is that a media beat up as well. They can also get down and dirty. With a lot of luck they will go down the proverbial.

lyn1

19/03/2010Hi Ad [b]OH DEAR: Expensive Glenn Milne axed[/b] Ostermann thankyou for you kind compliment, I always enjoy your comments too. Your link [b]HAS MADE MY DAY[/b] OH DEAR: Expensive Glenn Milne axed

Bushfire Bill

19/03/2010[i] OH DEAR: Expensive Glenn Milne axed [/i] Score one for our side. He won't be missed.

Ostermann

19/03/2010Maybe Glenn can get a job as Tony's "thought bubblist" and maybe shannas is going to have some sleepless night as well

Ad astra reply

19/03/2010Folks I was expecting more comment about who had ‘won’ yesterday’s ‘debate’ in QT; maybe we’ll see it tomorrow. Isn’t it comical how the media and I guess a lot of us, seem to need to reduce almost everything political into a contest. There must always be a winner with arms reaching heavenwards, and of course a loser with head hung low slouching away – how primitive it all is. Yet with Tony Abbott, the pugilistic politician as an adversary, the win-lose mindset is almost inevitable. So before we see the expert’s analysis, how do we see it? There were many aspects to yesterday’s QT debate. One side did not 'win' them all. Let’s make a little dissection: [b]Ability to speak at very short notice[/b] Abbott did well to fill ten minutes and a further five with continuous and animated talk about health, hardly drawing breath. He deserves full credit for that accomplishment. His supporters believe he ‘smashed Rudd’. [b]Ability to energise the party[/b] Again, if one can judge from the reaction of the Coalition during his address, and subsequent Coalition comment, Abbott certainly did that. Rudd did likewise. It would be pointless to attempt to estimate who did best. [b]Theatricality[/b] Here Abbott was superior. His loud voice, his florid facies, his hand waving, and his animation were much greater than were Rudd’s. Rudd was forceful but measured; Abbott was showy. [b]Strength of negative arguments on the subject of health reform[/b] Abbott assembled a strong collection of negative material about Rudd, his Government, its record of achievement and its failings, which he chronicled forcibly. He did that proficiently. He argued strongly that the Government could not be trusted. He insisted that the Government could not run a hospitals plan, citing the insulation program as an example. The argument was and still is specious, but Abbott knows that this is irrelevant so long as it sounds plausible. Rudd assembled a lot of negative material about Abbott as past health minister, which he hammered home again and again. His ‘ripping of $1 billion out of the health care system’ was repeated over and again. Abbott and his front bench angrily denied this and held up graphs to show an increase in Howard Government spending over the years. Of course it increased to cover inflation and increased usage; what the Government is saying is that the agreed rate of increase was reduced to the extent of $1billion over a four year period – that was the ‘gouging’ – the states were short-changed. They scored pretty evenly on negativity. [b]Strength of positive arguments on the subject of health reform[/b] Abbott did not offer his alternative health reform plan. Rudd outlined his repeatedly in abbreviated form – major Commonwealth responsibility for funding, but local network control of hospitals; total Commonwealth responsibility for funding primary care. He had a document that provided detail. He detailed improvements in health in the past two years that rebut the ‘all talk, no action’ mantra. On the positive side Abbott scored zero, Rudd scored well. [b]Who got what they wanted?[/b] Rudd was spoiling for a debate on health that forced Abbott to declare his hand about Rudd’s health reform plan. He got the debate and Abbott’s unequivocal declaration that he [i]“questioned all of the policy and opposed most of it”[/i]. That is what Rudd wanted most of all. Abbott said he wanted a debate on hospitals and health. He got it – sooner than he expected – and now has another chance at the National Press Club next Toesday. On this score Rudd was streets ahead. On most of these criteria each side scored; how do you rate them? Was there a 'winner'?

janice

19/03/2010I read about Milne getting knocked off his pole over at Crikey Blogs - came here to pass on the news but Osterman beat me to it. One down but unfortunately dozens more to go. The more I see Abbott's performances the more I wonder about the intelligence and integrity of the Murdoch army of gutter journalists. These people who call themselves journalists are nothing but malicious gossipmongers with a blatant agenda to bring about a) the downfall of an elected government or b) an election victory to install an incompetent alternative lead by a foul-mouthed, vindictive and mentally unstable excuse for a human being. Abbott is fast approaching the point when the pressure will cause him grief - he can no longer mask his body language which was apparent in the Today Show clip. I think Labor has his measure and they will keeping pushing his buttons until the volcano erupts.

Ad astra reply

19/03/2010Ostermann Thanks for the VexNews link. One can only hope Milne has been ejected from all news outlets. We can do without his scuttlebutt, innuendo and dirt digging. Apparently he wasn't doing even his dirt digging well enough - no that's imcompetence writ large. They didn't mention it, but the episode on last week's [i]Insiders[/i] when he appeared to reveal confidential information about what he asserted explained Tony Abbott's attitude to homosexuality, was in my view one of the most disgusting things he has done, and he has plenty of others to compete with that.

Ostermann

19/03/2010Hi All Janice sorry about stumping you mate, I think you're correct in the assumption that Rudd does have Abbotts measure, Rudd has been watching him looking the chinks, and yesterdays QT was a fishing trip and Labor hooked him using his own ego as bait, Abbott can't help him self, full of self importance and no humility, what gets up Abbotts nose the most is that Rudd doesn't play by the same rules as himself which is threatening to him and because of that Abbott is fighting in the dark, swinging wildly hoping to land a punch, so much for the "warror intelligent" he touts himself as. So Tuesday is going to be a very interesting day can't wait to see the outcome.

Ad astra reply

19/03/2010Colen No one is saying that any party is immune from dirty tricks. Since Abbott took over we are seeing bare-knuckle street fighting from a pugulist politician. We're not in a bar-room fight where the bad guy pulls out all the dirty tricks and the good guy fights claen but always wins. In my view it's time Rudd took off the gloves and gave Abbott a dose of his own medicine even if that is lamented by Shanas as 'down and dirty'. Let's see more of it - meet fire with fire.

lyn1

19/03/2010Hi Ad [b]IS THIS SUSPCIOUS[/b]. a way out, a ploy so Liberals can then say, Kevin Rudd won't agree to their request. http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2010/03/19/2850907.htm?section=justin

You must be kidding

19/03/2010Just advise me again ... because it obvious you folks are across political strategy ... why is the PM debating Abbott ... why is he giving him a stage to compare both offerings ... if the PM does not sell his program at the debate and only attacks Abbott, he loses surely ... as why does a PM get into the personal vitriol ... And if Abbott provide more grist for the Murdoch mill why would you risk that. It seems to me that at this time of the politcal process it is a mistake by the PM. I mean why give the Opposition breath. Why allow Abbott a national stage? Is it because the polls have the PM safe on this issue and they are trying to project Abbott as a spoiler ... but what happens if the premiers reject him ... would not that mean Abbott is right. So wouldn't you wait until the premiers say yes and then debate abbott It seems strange to me that if you brilliant poltical strategists are right and the press are hounding Rudd then he is on a hiding to nothing ... I would have waited until after COAG and before the budget. So if it is now ... with the risk of more poor press ... why are they doing it ... to coin a Keating scenario, why doesn't Rudd "do him slowly" ... it seems to me it could go pear shape ... WC Fields always said never work with children or animals ... so why is Rudd working with both next week (according to you folk) Perhaps it was becuase Obama was coming a few days later and now he is not ... so is this a whoops moment.

Ostermann

19/03/2010lyn1 oops I thinks Abbotts ego has just swollen somewhat, hmmm maybe?????, he wants to make this bigger than Ben Hur.

Colen

19/03/2010"Let's see more of it - meet fire with fire." I happen to agree with Ostermann, for once, Tuesday will be interesting. I expect Canberra to be a hive of actvity this weekend as they prepare for the debate. Surf's up anyone.

Ad astra reply

19/03/2010Ostermann This is becoming like a poker game - each raising the other. Abbott-induced gamesmanship?

Ostermann

19/03/2010Ad Yep it certainly is, but who will call first?

Sir Ian Crisp

19/03/2010Ad Astra, I watched QT and I scrutinised Mr Abbott and his ability to ad lib. I noted that there were 121 ahs, 89 ums, and 103 ers. In all he uttered 2391 words and he did manage to get them in the right order. Things are looking up for our politicians. If only we can now train them to spend their own money and stop raiding the taxpayers' purse.

lyn1

19/03/2010[b]AFTERNOON LINKS[/b] http://www.crikey.com.au/2010/03/19/media-briefs-glenn-milne-poisoned-at-news-kim-williams-used-to-love-the-abc-ruperts-first-pay-shot/ http://www.smh.com.au/national/abbott-dare-gets-rudd-talking-20100318-qifg.html http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2010/03/19/2850945.htm?WT.mc_id=newsmail http://hoydenabouttown.com/20100319.7335/canberras-great-communicators/ http://blogs.crikey.com.au/purepoison/2010/03/19/weekend-talk-thread-march-19-21/ http://www.theaustralian.com.au/politics/qt-tactic-was-my-move-albanese/story-e6frgczf-1225842941995 http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/blogs/rocco-bloggo/joes-loose-cannons/20100318-qi4u.html

HillbillySkeleton

19/03/2010http://blogs.news.com.au/dailytelegraph/yoursay/index.php/dailytelegraph/comments/why_kevin_rudd_is_a_do_nothing_pm/ And Tony Abbott is an empty vessel that makes a lot of noise. :)

HillbillySkeleton

19/03/2010Ostermann and AA, Tony Abbott is forgetting that it is the Prime Minister that calls all the shots wrt the debates. I think the PM is right, Tony Abbott only wants a free for all debate because he doesn't have much to say about Health and Hospitals. He probably doesn't have any policy to stand up and defend on Tuesday, truth be told. He's just trying to bluff the PM when he only holds a pair of 2s.

HillbillySkeleton

19/03/2010You Must Be Kidding, When you say that Kevin Rudd will be working with a child and an animal next week, did you mean Tony Abbott? :)

HillbillySkeleton

19/03/2010Tony Abbott and Brian Loughnane are already sounding like they are back in government, demanding the PM bend to their desire for a 90 minute debate in Prime Time with Abbott able to ask questions of the PM himself. I believe that he only wants it to be this way so that he can harangue Kevin Rudd with his bully-boy style of 'debate'. I think I can safely predict that he won't be able to resist butting in on the PM's answers, and instead of debate we will get diatribe from TA.

Ad astra

19/03/2010Sir Ian, COPS Thank you for counting the 121 ahs, 89 ums, 103 ers and 2391 words uttered by Tony Abbott in his debate speech. I didn't realize there were so many ahs, ums and ers; must be getting used to Abbott-speak. You are absolutely right when you say we need to [i]"train them to spend their own money and stop raiding the taxpayers' purse."[/i] It is appaling how much time and therefore momey that is wasted on silly questions and long answers in QT. They are paid to govern, not squabble like kids.

Ad astra reply

19/03/2010Folks We're being swamped by an avalanch of spam, so I'm closing comments. Something coming up from Bushfire Bill soon.
How many oranges do I have if I have 3 oranges and take ONE away?